Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Slow and Steady
Remember the fable about the tortoise and the hare? The hare got off to a zippy start and seemed sure to win the race. But he didn't, did he? The tortoise, while naturally much slower than the hare, kept moving steadily towards the finish line and was able to cross first.
What's the take-home message of this fable? Slow and steady wins the race. To reach your weight-loss goals, you need to switch from the hare's to the tortoise's mindset. In other words, you must break the "all or nothing" mentality.
Do you start diets with superhuman resolve — determined to eat right and work out seven days a week without fail — only to fall off the wagon and give up hope?
This kind of approach to anything — especially to your health — can be very tempting, and may even feel motivational. But I'm telling you right now that it's a dangerous approach that will only set you up for failure. Human beings are imperfect. It's inevitable that you will eventually skip a workout or give in to temptation, and you'll feel like a failure and want to give up entirely — i.e., trade the all for the nothing.
So, start thinking like a tortoise. Pace yourself. Allow yourself to have a slice of pizza or take a day off now and then; just don't stray too far from the path that will lead you to your goals.