FINDING BALANCE: The Losing Battle

    Dear Reader,

    It's that time of the year again!  It's the end of the year and you are ready to make your commitment to getting in your best shape.  It sounds a lot like last years commitment right?  Is it me?  Or does it seem like you just can't win this battle with finding balance?  Like most people, you work, go to school, have kids, and you are trying to make the best of the little time you have.  You know that your health is important.  In fact, you think about it every day.  Your clothes don't fit the way they once did.  It even hurts to sit.  Not to mention, age is starting to show on your body and in your habits. Is there a way out?  Finding a balance just seems like a losing battle on most days.  You don't want to believe this but it sure does feel like it.  What can you do? Is there a real solution? YES! THERE IS A REAL SOLUTION!! 

    Over the past 15 years, I have learned that life changes our priorities more than we care to admit. We are stubborn about changing. We don't want to grow up. At least, not this way.  After your college years, your new job, marriage, a new family, and a consuming routine you have become a different person than you once were.  With that said, fitness becomes a very low priority. There simply isn't any time for exercise .... and many other things. You are no longer the person you were.  You were once a fun and outgoing person without responsibilities.  Don't you miss that freedom?  Unfortunately, you will never be that person again.  Believe it or not, that's a really good thing.  Let's talk about a game plan.  That game plan starts with acceptance. 

    First, you need to accept that your life isn't where you want it to be right now. Accept that everything in your life is changing right now.  Accept that your life is hard. Accept that it hurts.  Accept that it may not change for a while.  You may gain weight, lose muscle tone, and lose confidence in your image.  This is normal in stages of extreme transition.  Your foundation needs to be reconfigured around your current situation. The more you deny what's happening, the longer it takes to make the transition. Have you accepted that your situation is happening right now?  Good!!!  That's the first step.

    The second step is to accept that you made your life this way for a reason. You wanted to do more.  You wanted find your potential.  You wanted to challenge yourself. You are learning a lot about self at this poing in your life.  That takes a while.  This process is important and it has to happen.  In short, life is going to suck for a while.  This means that your old workout plan isn't going to work for your new lifestyle anymore. This means that you need to venture into uncharted waters. You have to be okay being vulnerable and not having control in every situation. However, that doesn't mean you can't do anything about your current situation.  

    The third step is discovering what you can and cannot change.  There are many events happening in your life right now.  ALL OF THEM are important. Some of these events are in your control and some of them are out of your control.  Focus on the things you can control.  What do you want to change?  Make a plan of action once you find the areas of your life you want to change.  Do you want to change your results with your fitness routine?  Do you want to get a promotion? Do you want to spend more time with your family? Decide how that is going to happen for you and make a real plan and accept the sacrifice that comes with it.  So, what have you decided?

    Here's the deal. This is happening to millions of people around the world. You are not alone. You are overworked and life is beating you down right now.  Sadly, health and wellness professionals don't seem to make it any easier.  They only remind you that you are not doing what you are supposed to do.  They remind you that your priorities are out of order.  Ultimately,  they remind you that you lost your focus.  To get out of this nightmare you need a support group.  You need to find people who are going through what you are going through.  You need to find people who have made it out of what you are going through.  YOU NEED TO TALK ABOUT WHAT YOU ARE GOING THROUGH REGULARLY. Things will change once you start getting your thoughts out of your mind.  Release the pressure from all of your stressors by venting them. You will find that different people have different solutions.  You will find a way to make it through your struggles with fitness, career, personal, and other areas of your life.  You won't stress yourself because you  will see other people are struggling just like you.  You will find courage in their strength. What have you decided to do?  After reading this, I hope you have decided you are in control of the way you feel and what you do tomorrow.  Be the best version of yourself.  That's all you can do.  And if that's all you have, it is plenty.  

    So tell me.  What have you decided to do?  Please leave your comments below. 


    Linton McClain  

    Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Life Coach, Author: Exercising With Purpose