Baby Steps

This post was inspired by an unlikely source, one of my favorite movies “What About Bob”.  If you haven’t seen this great film I highly recommend you check it out.  If you have seen it, you might be wondering why I’m writing about it on a health/fitness blog.  The movie basically follows Bob Wiley (Bill Murray), who has extreme anxiety which causes him to constantly worry, and seek out Dr. Leo Marvin’s help through counseling.  The movie basically chronicles how Bob drives Dr. Marvin crazy.  It might sound like a stretch, but don’t worry, there’s a lesson to learn here I think.  To get an idea about what the movie is like, check out some highlights in this clip:

 

Disappointed With Your Progress?

So even though it’s a comedy which I find hilarious (I know some people get as annoyed with Bob as Dr. Marvin does), I think Dr. Marvin was on to something with the book “Baby Steps”.  And I feel like many people could take that advice when it comes to fitness.  When I talk with people just starting out, often times they’re looking to lose a bunch of weight in the first week.  Or they weigh themselves every single day and get very disappointed if they don’t see the scale moving in the right direction every time they get on it.  Does that sound like you?  Sometimes if a person doesn’t look absolutely ripped in their first 30 days or even first round of a program, they get frustrated and quit.  That’s what I want to avoid.

In my opinion, often times people expect change to come at an unrealistic pace.  They want to lose all their extra weight and build muscle and get in the best  shape of their life after 60 or 90 days.  Can that happen for some people?  Sure it can.  Do most people reach their long term goal in 60 or 90 days?  Not usually.  Typically it takes a couple rounds to really get to where you want to be.  And that’s ok, it’s normal.  The last thing I want is someone to quit because the results aren’t coming fast enough.

The Lesson of “Baby Steps”

baby stepsSo back to “baby steps”.  In the movie, the idea is for Bob to take “baby steps” going in the right direction to eventually achieve a much larger goal, like get out of Dr. Marvin’s office.  He “baby steps to the door, baby steps down the hallway, baby steps into the elevator”.  The idea is that you accomplish smaller tasks or goals that can accumulate into accomplishing much larger goals.  And that’s exactly how I would advise anyone to approach a workout program.  Set smaller goals for yourself and “baby step” your way to a really successful round.

If you’re doing Insanity, maybe your first goal is to make it through a warm-up without taking a break.  Then your next goal is to only take 1 break during each set of exercises in one day.  Then make it through an entire workout without breaking.  And along the way set a 30 day weight loss or inches lost goal.  So as you can accomplish more and more of your smaller goals, you’re going to end up with significant changes in the long run.  A long-term goal is great.  I love having something to shoot for and I think it’s important.  But if you don’t have shorter-term goals that will help you get there, it can be tough to stay motivated.

So as you think about your goals for your workout program right now, I would highly recommend setting some short term goals and measuring your progress that way.  If you hit those goals, you’ll reach the long term goal as well.  Tony even says it in P90X, “Rome was not built in a day, and neither was your body!”  So take a lesson from Bob Wiley, and “baby step” your way to success!

 

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  1. […] be learned there that we can all apply I think.  If you haven’t read it, check out my post: Baby Steps I also get questions often about what footwear is best, so if you’re wondering that yourself […]

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