I put tough in quotes because everyone’s “tough” will be different. This could be anything from something that most might think is minor, or something extremely stressful…it is what you make of it.
Let me know if you’ve been here before. Decide to make a change, maybe lose some weight, start pumping iron – and things went awesome, at first.
But then something came up, you got busy at work, the kids got out of school for the summer, or someone in your family got sick.
Now, these are all different levels of stress, and some more serious than others – but either way they can all be lumped into things that can derail progress pretty quickly.
So how do we keep progressing when things aren’t all unicorns and rainbows?
1 – Identify the timeline of the “issue”
Is it something that might be over in a week, a month, or a year? This matters because you need to set the frame in which you will be attacking the problem. If it is only a week, you can be more drastic in your approach, but if it’s a year’s worth then we need to find something more sustainable.
Example: We are getting ready to move in 3 days. Things have been crazy with the back and forths with our awesome realtor, the lender, and other parties. On top of this, we have been trying to pack up a little bit every day, leaving little time to think about eating, prepping, and tracking food. So what have I done? I have eaten 90% the EXACT same thing every day.
Is this something I could do for a year? Hell no. But I know the end is near, and it just simplifies my life – and has sustained my progress for my personal goal.
If it is a month, or many months worth of something – planning out more of a process is key.
2 – Creating solid habits PRIOR to the longer
This is key for the longer duration stressors. Kids home for the summer and you have to run run run them around. It’s life – so we gotta roll with it and build up some habits.
A habit is something we do automatically, at a subconscious level, good or bad.
Building or breaking habits is no easy task – it can take more than 2 months to do. There are three phases of building habits:
- Initiation – new behavior and context for new behavior are selected.
- Learning – Habits start to become automatic
- Stability – Formed habit continues perpetually
It is also important to choose one thing at a time and focus on it, and it only, for at least 2 weeks before trying to add in another habit.
Everyone wants the quick results, but think of all the quick results you have sought out the past year? Where did they get you? Down, up, down, up, down and up? What if you would’ve given your focus for a full year on just 2 or three solid, and sustainable habits?
I would bet money that you would be MUCH better off.
3 – Maybe it’s not the time to “progress”
If you are dealing with something uber stressful, and keeping you super busy, or taking up a ton of your focus…maybe it’s not the time to progress.
HOWEVER – it’s not the time to take a step back either!
In a big-time high-stress moment, maintaining can be a major win. Life happens and plateaus are wins. Why? Because the eventual goal IS a plateau – can you maintain your weight?
So think of maintaining, especially during high-stress times, as practice for your ultimate goal – once you hit your goal weight.
This might be easier said than done – but it can be done, and it all starts with creating those habits AHEAD of time (step 2).
If you need help getting started, look no further than online coaching. Training and nutrition! Let me help you find the best plan for you – from anywhere in the world.
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