By Gabby Reece
I really can't stand the infomercial shows that claim you can make any kind of change to your body in "just 10 minutes a day." Then I was talking to a friend of mine about a lady who works above him on the second floor. She's very overweight and takes the elevator up and down at least 3 round trips a day (6 times total). He said to me, "Imagine if she just walked up and down the stairs every time she needed to go somewhere?" We both concluded that after a year, she could lose about 50 pounds. Mind you, this woman is very overweight, and her body is just looking for an excuse to unload the pounds.
What's my point? The number one thing people complain about is not having enough time. They think if they can't go to the gym or work out for an hour, then it doesn't count. They don't have an hour and feel overwhelmed by the process of trying to figure out how to stay or get in shape. What happens? Nothing. We just give up on things when they become too big to manage.
I'm here to tell you that if you only had 15 minutes a day for 4 days a week, at the end of the year, you would have made a change. If we did an experiment with two similar people (body types, age, sex, environment, genetics, personality), and one did a little something a few minutes a day and one didn't, by the end of one year, their physiques would look different.
Cliché: Baby steps. Oftentimes, when we're pursuing anything, we're trying to take on the whole endeavor at once. Be it weight loss, relationships, a busy week, etc. It's often beneficial to just do what you can and take it as it comes. Don't think, "Oh, I need to lose 30 pounds" and get paralyzed by what adaunting undertaking that can be. Set up a goal and then create little goals within the big goal that are easy to obtain. Then when you string together all of the little successes, you will have arrived at some bigger destination.
This week, set two new goals. I'm always going to take the stairs vs. the elevator or escalator. Park as far away from everything as you can and walk. Whenever you have 5 minutes, do something – do jumping jacks, walk around the block, practice squats in front of the TV, hop on your bike. Don't think, just do. Don't feel so much about it all – just go for it.
Make a goal about what you will put in your mouth. If you're a coffee drinker, OK but then just drink water for a week. No soda (that includes diet sodas especially) or juices – just water. Tell yourself you're not going to eat beyond feeling full, and lay off the snacking.
If you start to do some of these tiny things, you will make a change, I promise.
As you begin to get momentum and start feeling better and better, you'll find 100 new mini goals to set. You may even start getting rid of friends that aren't good for you. Watch out – when you get start making changes, only the positive things survive a real shakeup.
Is this ideal? No. Would it be better to have a trainer, a shrink, and a chef and hours and hours in the day to dedicate to the quest of losing weight and being fit? Oh, sorry I fell asleep for a minute and was dreaming of a really cool place.
Listen, we're all where we are because of choices we made. Make new choices and you'll watch as your outcome begins to shift from the same old self-fulfilling prophecy.
Write your goals down. Visualize the changes. See yourself. Believe. Commit, and get to work. If you have a bad day or slip up, get up the next day and go get it.
Oh, and this is going to be my new mantra (especially after reading people's comments), stop saying you can't or you don't have time, stop placing blame. At the end of the day, what is the alternative? When people complain about not having time to eat well or exercise, I start to wonder what do they have time for? TV? Family, work, and then what? What else is more important than your health? It seems like the most fundamental part of living, yet so many of us keep trying to make it a negotiation. So here's to "10 minutes a day."