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Find Your Inner Athlete

With the start of a new school year just right around the corner, that means football season is almost here. These players have been working hard all summer conditioning their body and mind for one goal: winning games. They are athletes; they train to win! Athletes are always working to become better physically and mentally towards a goal.

The other day someone called me an athlete and I laughed out loud. I have always just thought of myself as a mom trying to keep my belly fat down. But then, I looked up the definition. Well, maybe I am an athlete.

Merriam-Webster Definition of athlete is, “A person who is trained or skilled in exercises, sports, or games requiring physical strength, agility, or stamina.”

There is a man in my bootcamp that played college football ten years ago. He told me the other day that he now views exercise like he used to view his football conditioning. “I’m not here to maintain, I’m here to get better.”

It’s such a simple statement, but so profound. We have to adopt that philosophy for life. If you maintain then you’re going to stay the same. This applies to every area: physical, spiritual, mental, and social. We must always be aware that we can be a better version of ourselves, and continue to work towards that version.

Becoming better physically means that you always training towards a goal of being fitter, stronger, healthier, and possibly thinner. This will not happen overnight. You must make the decision to change. Change will happen but every little decision you make needs to be the right one. Don’t hit snooze and skip your morning workout, choose eggs and oatmeal over donuts, choose positive words instead of gossip.

The human body is an amazing thing. You will be shocked at how quickly you can get into shape. Losing weight is a side effect of a healthy lifestyle.

Tips for turning daily decisions into noticeable change:

Workout smarter. Attend a class so the instructor can make the workout for you and motivate you.

Prepay and plan when you will workout. If you’re financially invested, you’re less likely to cancel.

Ask a friend for accountability. Exercise buddies can guilt trip you into not skipping!

Eat five small meals a day. Big meals take a long time to burn off. Small portions (250-350 calories) will keep your metabolism burning.

Log your calories. Use an app like the My Fitness Pal app. When dieting, you’re supposed to eat your goal weight times ten. If you want to weigh 160, then you need to get to 1600 calories everyday in five small meals.

Surround yourself with positivity. Find two or three positive people that are excited for your journey to health. This is the last point for a reason; I really want you to get this. Trust me, not every day is going to be a cake walk. In fact, you should probably avoid cake walks altogether to reach your goals. The point is, there are going to be tough days and you might want to be negative, but those positive people will prop you up with the support you need to persevere.

One thing that you’ll notice about great athletes is their ability to commit to the goal, whether it’s the next season, the next game, or the next play. Every action they make has a consequence, both good and bad. This awareness and commitment is something we can all strive to possess.

Fitness is part of my life. I try to make the right decisions. Some days I fail and eat two donuts for breakfast. But most days you’ll find me working out and eating healthy. You’ve got the chance to make the right decision at your next meal and workout. Good luck!