So many people have asked me, “so how did you get started? Where did you find the motivation to change?” I’ve finally spent enough time with the questions that I think I can answer them openly and constructively. So here we go.

It all comes to two simple questions:

“Are you satisfied with what you have?”

and

“What do you want?”

The answers to those two questions drive EVERYTHING!

If the answer to the first question is, “yes,” that’s fine. It’s better than fine. Congratulations. Sincerely. You’re one of the lucky ones. But we’re done here. I’ve got nothing left to offer and there’s no point in you reading further.

However, if the answer is “no,” then settle in. we might be here a while, and this might get a bit uncomfortable along the way. Because as simple as those questions are, the answers get pretty complex pretty quickly.

If you said, “No. I’m not satisfied with what I have, ” then you have to move on to the next question, “what do I want?” Here’s where it gets scary, because you have to be brutally honest with yourself about the answers.

It’s my personal experience and general observation of others that ultimately people will find a way to go out and get the things they want. Doesn’t matter what we’re talking about: careers, relationships, fitness, lifestyles, whatever. We shape our lives to the best of our abilities around what we want. I’m a prime example.

While no one’s ever asked directly, I know they’ve wondered and I’ve often wondered myself, “how did you get so heavy and so out of shape?” It’s going to sound stupid, but it wasn’t what I wanted. It wasn’t what I was concerned with and it wasn’t what I paid attention to. Here’s why.

My wife and I always knew we wanted a family. We always agreed that 2 kids was the perfect number for our family. Neither of us wanted a child to grow up as an only child and 3 or more kids sounded like trouble. After all, if the kids outnumber the parents, then you have to give up man to man defense and go to zone and that’s no good.

From 1998 when Erin and looked each other in the eyes and agreed that it was time to start our family until our 2nd child’s adoption in 2009 my life revolved around what I wanted, a 2 child family. Everything else took a back seat, including my health and fitness. It’s not an excuse. I’m not placing blame I take full responsibility, but it’s also a fact. I just didn’t pay my health and diet any attention because it’s not what I wanted to focus on.

A 2 child family was the dream. That was the goal. That was what I wanted and having that was not easy. All of my time and energy (physical and emotional) went into the pursuit of that goal. Neither of us ever imagined that it would take 11 years to realize.

For 11 years everything I had went into overcoming the challenges that stood in the way of what I wanted. Infertility. Medical procedures for Erin. Surgeries for me. 6 years of questions and doubt and then finally in 2004 our son was born.

From that point on my energy and attention was divided. First I was focused on being a parent to the child that we had. Second we continued to pursue the dream of the second child that we still wanted. Who knew that would take another 5 years?

In 2009 our daughter arrived. We’d done it. We got what we wanted. That’s when what I wanted changed. Suddenly I could see that we’d achieved the dream and I wasn’t able to enjoy it. I got out of breath playing with the 5 year old. I threw out my back lifting my infant daughter from her crib. Suddenly what I wanted changed and I set out on the path to go get it.

It was no longer enough to simply be a dad with 2 kids. I wanted to be a healthy fit dad that could be active with his kids. I wanted to be the Superman to my kids that my father was to me when I was growing up. After 11 years of ignoring my health, it wasn’t going to be easy. But once I acknowledged what I wanted making a plan and finding a path towards that goal wasn’t all that tough.

So I’ll ask you again, but before I do, I’ll remind you, “Be honest with yourself,” because that’s critical here.

If you’re honest with yourself one of two things will happen. Either you find the peace of mind and confidence in knowing that you’re truly satisfied with what you have and you can sleep easy. Or you find the drive to drop all the pretense, let go of all of the excuses and find a path that will lead you where you want to go.

Are you ready? Here it comes. “What. Do. You. Want?”

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