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90-Day Primer: Balancing the Basics

With the 90-Day Challenge now underway, many of you are out of the starting gate this week with your in-it-to-win-it strategy. More than the competition itself, you’re committed to come out the other side of the 90 days a healthier, happier you. Reading through our success stories on the Life Time Weight Loss blog, you’ll notice how these men and women have achieved great results. They’ve shown the personal responsibility it takes to start new habits and stick with them. They’ve at times overcome major obstacles with perseverance, discipline and flexibility. It’s not an easy task to say the least. As these stories illustrate, our success depends largely on how we direct our basic resources (time, money, energy, support and psychology). When we acknowledge our personal needs in our health (and competition) journeys, we’re better able to make the best use of those resources and enhance our chance to meet the goals we’ve set.


“Work Smarter, Not Harder.” “Time is money.” You’ve heard these and other time-focused sayings, I’m sure. When I sit down with members who have a committed interest in changing their health, the first resource we discuss is time. By identifying how much time they have, need, and want to invest, we can better configure the most appropriate recommendation to reach their goals. Start by thinking about your day. From the time you wake up until the time you fall asleep, what are the circumstances that influence your schedule? If you work 12-hour days, following a workout routine that has you at the gym hours each and every day won’t be realistic for you. If you currently devote no time to preparing and cooking your own food, making a ton of drastic diet changes may set you up for failure. The goal here is to identify the nature of your schedule – what can be changed, what can’t and how alterations can be made most effectively for long-term behavior change and personal success.


Support in any weight loss/transformation journey is critical as we wrote about recently. More important than choosing a support system right away is first identifying your needs. So, let’s break down your support system. Does your family support not just your goals but your day-to-day commitment to the behaviors that will get you there? What about your job? Do you have the means to leave work for a quick workout? Do you have to be on the road all of the time, faced with challenging nutrition limitations? How else does your day support or obstruct your goals? What has gotten in the way in the past? After you identify what has or hasn’t worked in the past, you can better identify what can work for you now.


Things that you can budget: time, money, and energy. Imagine that each of these areas has its own individual bank account. Which account is most flush? Which tends to be the most limited in funds or just quickest to deplete? All of these are important questions in building the plan that’s best for you and the allocations you’ll need to make as you prioritize your health. If you know, for example, your energy is gone at the end of each weekday, this information will tell you to schedule your workouts early in the day or to do more kitchen prep on the weekends. On another note, your level of personal accountability will help determine any investments necessary. If you feel like you have the utmost personal responsibility and the track record to show it, you might just need a coach to help keep you accountable. If you feel that you need a higher level of support to stay accountable throughout the entire journey, then you may need to invest in alternative options like private or group training.


The psychology (or mindset) of a health/transformation journey can be the most variable and the most subjective of the resources for success. Weight loss has been attributed to 90% diet and 10% exercise. Whatever your personal ratio for nutrition and workouts, it’s always 100% mindset. Ensuring that you’re mentally prepared to start this journey and that you’re committed to see it through is extremely imperative. I’ve come across several individuals who had a generous budget, ample time and solid support to get started on their journeys; however, their mindset got in the way of their success. Sometimes they weren’t ready to accept new lifestyle habits. Other times they weren’t ready for their bodies to change, or they were unwilling to accept help. We can easily underestimate the need to continually “fill the well” of motivation. Investing in our mindsets can mean reading member success stories every week, Flourish educational and motivational articles or other health-focused resources. Some questions to ask yourself on a frequent basis include: “How important is this goal for me?”, “Am I ready to change my current lifestyle in order to see success?” or “What will happen if I don’t change?” In the beginning, these questions will help you assess your willingness to begin the journey, but reviewing them over time will help you recommit to the short-term steps that will get you to that overarching goal.

How have you addressed these questions in your journey - whether before beginning or as you progressed? What “resource” challenges have you faced along the way? Share your thoughts, and keep in mind that Life Time has something that fits everyone’s time, support, mindset and budget needs. Connect with a health and fitness professional today for a free consultation to make the most of your resources on your way to success. Thanks for reading, everyone, and good luck with your 90-Day journey!

Written by Mitchell Keyes – Program Manager, Life Time Training

This article is not intended for the treatment or prevention of disease, nor as a substitute for medical treatment, nor as an alternative to medical advice. Use of recommendations in this and other articles is at the choice and risk of the reader


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