When I work with clients or talk to people about their fitness goals, many express their fear of failure. For some people, it seems easier to do nothing than to invest their time at the gym and risk falling short.
To those who fear failure, I have two points:
First, I would like to remind you that it’s important to fail to reach at least half of your fitness goals. If you are achieving everything you’ve set out to achieve, then I’d suggest that you’re not aiming high enough.
Secondly, maybe ‘fail’ isn’t the right word. Failing is a judgment that we as humans place on a given action. Substitute judgement with this attitude, “You can not fail, you can only produce results” – Dr. Wayne Dyer. Then the most important question to ask yourself is this; ‘what do you do with the results you produce?’ It is better to jump in and experience life than to stand on the sidelines fearing that something might go wrong.
Think of a child learning to walk; the child will fall down numerous times as he or she discovers how to use their muscles and find their balance. These falls aren’t failures, they’re learning experiences.
If you are exercising then you probably have goals. If you don’t have goals – make them! Its like taking a road trip without a destination in mind.
EXAMPLE – Betty Sue goes to the gym with the initial goal of losing 25 pounds in 12 weeks. After 12 weeks she falls short on her goal and only loses 5 pounds. Rather than considering this a failure, view this as an important result. Take the results and do something with them. Change some of the variables and try some new techniques. Maybe even re-evaluate your goals.
If you haven’t already, it’s a good idea to write down your goals. Make sure they are SMART goals – goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevelent, and timely.
Now here is the kicker… Our goals should be attainable yes, but they shouldn’t be too attainable. Failing to reach 50% of your goals is a good thing. It means you’re shoothing high. It means that you are really pushing and challenging yourself. After all, it is better to shoot for the stars and land on the moon than aim for the mountains and reach them.
If you are reaching all of your goals, you’re probably not challenging yourself enough.
Remember, failure isn’t really failure. It’s just a result – and it’s an opportunity to re-evaluate your current goals. Maybe you didn’t accomplish your goal because it’s actually not that important to you. Or maybe your goal needs a new deadline or a new approach.
Learn from your results, and then evolve accordingly.
Everyone has that one fearless badass friend. My girlfriend Steph is that friend. She has completed a 12 week nutrition and exercise program with us at Trench and since transforming her physique she has totally transformed her life. I am constantly inspired and motivated by Steph. In the past few weeks she has registered for winter hockey, decided to pursue a new career, and even retired her (no offence) ugly male basketball shorts for more suitable female athletic shorts – I know, fearless! I have shared one of her recipes below.
Apple Crisp Protein Muffins: