My fitness habits, part 4: Nothing special about what I did

July 20, 2012 by Joshua
in Awareness, Blog, Fitness, Freedom

Since so many people don’t like their physical condition, don’t find reward or joy in exercising, and regard these aspects of their life as punishments, I imagine many of them want to change their beliefs and behaviors, perhaps using my example as inspiration. Many people may not care too, I guess.

I’ve written a lot on the topics — enough that it might seem overwhelming.

Can anyone do what I do?

I didn’t do anything anyone else couldn’t. Maybe they don’t want to or haven’t figured out how to, but they could.

I don’t read many diet or exercise books, but I have a feeling they don’t make a point of focusing on your emotions, which I consider the foundation for successful change. I focus on rewarding emotions and the environments, beliefs, and behaviors that create them. Healthy foods I teach myself to like. Healthy habits I teach myself to enjoy. Then I live a life of things I like and enjoy. Next thing I know, I have a healthy lifestyle I enjoy, created one belief and behavior at a time.

Most of the changes I started by using the Method, which anyone can do. I implemented them over the course of years — some over decades. I’ll keep changing more, probably as long as I live.

Once I change something I change it forever, but I only change it after I learn to like it.

I never stop myself from eating something I like or eat something I don’t. I never do an exercise I don’t want to. Fighting my emotional responses would work against improving my life, so I never do it. I take my time, understand how I respond to things, and change things when I am confident the change will create rewarding emotions. Taking my time is important because I plan to change forever. I don’t diet, I live a lifestyle.

It’s as simple as this:

If a change creates reward, I will want to continue it. If it doesn’t, I won’t. That’s why I start with emotional awareness, not something like willpower.

When I stopped eating meat I had wanted to for a while, maybe years, needlessly concerned about protein. When I stopped eating hydrogenated oil and corn syrup I was so disgusted by the decisions of the people at the companies manufacturing the “food” products to choose profits over the health of their customers by lying to them, I couldn’t do business with them. Each time I increment the number of burpees in my sets, I expect I will do that burpee with each set for decades, until my body can’t do it.

Sometimes I wonder if two sets of burpees a day are enough to get anyone in shape. I consider the evidence in my life conclusive. I suspect anyone who did thirty burpees a day and ate more or less like I do would inevitably get in good shape or at least get out of bad shape.

Before and after

The reader’s original comment asked if I had any before and after pictures from starting my burpee routine. I don’t, but I look the same now as I started. Remember I had just come off rowing over 500,000 meters in the previous twelve months (hmm… can’t find the post on that — I must have only posted on Facebook about that before leaving that creepy site) and a couple years of frequent yoga and running.

I just have more free time and probably a bigger smile.

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