Remain Goal Driven!

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Everyone preaches how important it is to have goals in life so I’m not going to preach about it.  When it came to fitness goals I started with just 1 thing… Get healthy.   Now I realized that this is a very vague goal because people have a different understanding of healthy.   Now this didn’t mean just get thin because I know a LOT of thin people who are the unhealthiest people I know but they don’t care because they are thin.  They just lucked out cause they happened to have good genes.  No for me this meant changing how I ate changing my mentality on how I handled my daily life and how I exercised and planned to start being active again.

Now as you know I was an athlete back in high school, I wasn’t a great athlete I just loved being active and it gave me something to do.  The coaches there taught me some pretty good life lessons that I won’t forget like don’t quit even when you think you can’t push yourself anymore.  Do I always follow that to a T, nope I’m not 16 anymore, but I kept the spirit of it alive to this day.  So starting out my goal was to lose weight I had ballooned up to almost 400lbs.  I didn’t think that it was going to change when I reached my goal weight.  Hell I haven’t even reached my goal weight of 220lbs, I’m about 40lbs shy of it right now.  But I have started other goals as I have become more active like running 3 half marathons a year, and completing a 5K race 9 months out of the year (training runs do not count).  I’m not a runner and I hate running, but it’s an evil that I have to endure if I want to do other stuff in life.  Running was boring and that I was introduced to the San Diego Tri Rock.  I saw what the sprint distance was which was 500 meter swim, 12 mile bike ride, and a 5K run.  I thought to myself, HEY I CAN DO THAT!  So I signed up I had set that goal to finish.  I finished in 1 hour 48 minutes after rolling my ankle out of the transition from the bike to run and the medial staff wanted to pull me out.  I told them no I am going to finish and I walked every step of that 5K in pain.  I felt like I really accomplished something cause it was something I didn’t think that I would ever have the chance to do never the less actually finish it.  That was back in 2010.  Fast forward to 2011 after a snowboarding accident where I tore some ligaments in my knee and screwed up some of my left shoulder.  I was out of shape again from it and didn’t have ANY goals at the time other than make it to the weekend cause I hated my job.  I noticed in that absence of a goal I really sat around and didn’t do much except drink.   But as you know from my earlier blog posts I worked through it and I started playing flag football again.  Didn’t really have a goal with that I just didn’t want to get hurt.  But what was happening on the inside, was that I was beginning to believe in myself that I can go out and be active again.  So I signed up to do the Las Vegas Half Marathon because it was something different I was tired of running around San Diego.  I was down to 300lbs when I signed up for it and Jojo and I started training for it.   At the same time I was still putting a lot of focus on doing Insanity and still lifting weights, little did I know I was not eating enough and I was killing the body.  Race time came and I still didn’t really worry about my diet cause I figured I had enough fat on the body that my body would burn it for energy right?  BOY WAS I WRONG!  I got through to mile 9 when I started cramping up in my quads and I was drinking plenty of water and Gatorade and GU from the stations.  But I finished in just over 3 hours.  But I finished, I now believed I could do more and more so my goals changed changed again to do more races and in 2013 I signed up for a race in January, February, March, April, May, June, September, and October.  Some of them are triathlons since I have found a passion for triathlons.   But what was once a main goal of losing weight has blossomed into becoming a triathlete and living a healthy lifestyle on top of working to become a personal trainer and fitness enthusiast.  So the moral of this blog post is don’t stay so focused on 1 goal that you are completely blind to the possibility of other goals presenting themselves.

Training?

I’m asked the question all the time what do I do for training?  Well quite frankly I do a lot cause I’ve got a lot of goals on my plate.  I’m training for weight loss, triathlons, half marathons, and a good physique.  But it wasn’t always that way, it started with losing weight as my main goal.  So what did I do to lose weight?  How do you stay focused and not get bored?  There are always questions regarding what I have been up to regarding training.

So, when I started out years ago with my sole goal being weight loss I knew cardio was going to be the focus.  Being an athlete back in high school I had vague background with working out and what types of cardio so I stuck to what I knew.  Treadmill, stair mill, and your basic weight training exercises.  I woke up in the morning and went to the gym and hit the stair mill for 20 minutes then did a full body workout consisting of squats, bench press, arm curls, triceps press downs, and wide grip pull downs.  I didn’t really know much but that wasn’t my goal to know much or be a meat head.  I was already the fat guy in the gym and it was really hard to stay focused when I tend to worry about other people in the gym talking about the fat guy on the stair mill on level 3 leaving a sweat pond at the base.  I’ve learned that you cannot go to the gym with that mentality cause you only defeat the purpose of going there.  The gym is your time, you’re the one sweating and trying to get your body into a healthy working order and no one should ever poke fun of you for doing that.  I will cheer on and support anyone that goes into the gym and actually works out towards a goal over someone who goes to the gym to suck up space on a piece of equipment talking on a cell phone or flexing in the mirror admiring the fact that they just bench pressed 330lbs and moved the bar 3 inches before moving it back on the rack.

As I shed weight my goals for training also shifted to less weight loss and more weight lifting to fill out my physique a bit more and I do much more running and swimming for my half marathons and triathlons.  I’ve had to do more homework on increasing my knowledge on what to do for what muscle groups, what distances of swimming and running, how to breath properly, the list goes on and I’m still learning!  But during this shift so many people have asked me about how can they better their workout or can I help them out with losing weight, or can I make a workout program for them cause I inspired them to lose weight.  Which then sparked a change in myself, and working towards becoming a Certified Personal Trainer.  I found out that I truly enjoy helping people better themselves.

Now my mentality in the gym when I’m training stays focused on the prize and that’s a better body.  Do my workouts get boring at times, sure.  Am I a victim of over training at times, you bet!  But you have to step back and look at the big picture.  All those years of neglect and this is what I have to do to get myself on track again.  This is what I have to do and it’s hard work but you know what happens when you do hard work?  You’re proud of your accomplishment you’re proud of the finished product.  That’s why we workout hard in the gym, we are proud!