Small Steps can Lead to Big Change
By Master Phil Nurse – “If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always gotten.”
I first came across this quote several years back in a now out-of-print book called Success One Day at a Time by John C. Maxwell. And years later, it still rings true to me.
This is exactly how you should approach your fitness goals! Stop doing what you’ve always done, if you want to get somewhere different – whether that means losing weight, getting into better shape, or becoming a champion in the ring. But that doesn’t mean you have to start out by making big changes. You can’t lose 20 lbs in a day. And champions aren’t made overnight. But a lot of small steps can take you far.
I’ve coached and trained thousands of people over the past 25 years, including UFC, WEC, and WBC champions. And all of my most successful athletes and students have the habit of dreaming big, but planning small. By “planning small” I mean that they set clear, specific goals and commit to making small improvements each day. Before you know it, those small improvement lead to big (and positive) changes.
Remember that we are the only ones that have the power to change ourselves. We should not blame others for why we are the way we are. Instead, take a close look in the mirror to see how we can improve and change our course for the better.
For the next 30 days, I challenge you to make one positive change to your life everyday, and see what you get out of it! Whether it’s trading in an apple for Twinkies, walking to work instead of driving, or setting aside 20 minutes each day to exercise, make small changes to your daily routine, and before you know it you’ll achieve your fitness goals.
Also, please comment on this post or write to us (at firstname.lastname@example.org) to let me know what goal you set and how you are progressing! I really do want to know.
The 5 Steps
To help you on your journey, here are 5 steps you can follow:
Step 1: Set Your Fitness Goals. Whether it’s to build muscle, lose weight (or fat), get toned, improve your athletic performance, or simply get healthier, the first step to success is figuring out your fitness goals.
Step 2: Write Down Your Fitness Goals. Once you know your fitness goals, write them down! This may seem silly to some of you. But evidence shows that writing down your goals increases your likelihood of success. So get your pen and paper, and start writing.
Be specific, and try to give yourself a deadline or deadlines for meeting your fitness goals. For example, if you want to get leaner, you can frame your goal as “to lose 20 pounds of fat in the next 20 weeks.”
It’s okay to set big goals – after all to accomplish great things you need to dream big. But remember to be realistic. Don’t commit to loss 20 pounds of fat in a week.
Step 3: Make a Plan. Now that you’ve written down your fitness goals, write down a specific plan for achieving them. Here’s where you can start listing those small daily changes you’re going to make. Are you going to eat better or train more? Here’s an example of how your plan might look:
Workout 2 to 3 hours a week;
Walk 45 minutes every other day; and
Eat 300 fewer calories each day (make sure to checkout our previous blog article on “What to Eat to Lose Weight” for tips on how to calculate your daily calories).
Also, be realistic. If you have never worked out more than 15 minutes, don’t plan to workout 2 hours each day. You’re likely setting yourself up to fail. Instead, set a more realistic goal, like 20 to 30 minutes a day. Once you’ve reached this goal, you can set another, higher one, until eventually maybe you can workout for 2 hours a day.
I can’t tell you how often people walk into my gym, the Wat, and say “I want to be a fighter,” but don’t realize the countless “little” steps that go into fighting, such as the hours of running, jumping rope, shadow boxing, pad work, and sparring that go into fighting.
Take baby steps towards your fitness goals, and over time you’ll develop the habits to you need to succeed in achieving your fitness goals- no matter how big your goals are.
Step 4: Up your Mental Game. In my experience, the toughest opponent to beat is usually yourself. If you let it, the doubt that lives inside your mind will keep you from reaching your fitness goals. Don’t let doubt beat you!
I often see my students – especially my newer students – want to stop short of their max. Usually, I’m there to help them push past the internal limits they set for themselves, whether it’s getting one more push-up or sparring one more round. But pushing through your internal limits is something you can do for yourself by visualizing your fitness goal and putting your negative thoughts aside – even if it’s just for the few seconds you need to get one more push-up!
If you’re short on time, choose an activity that works your body and your mind simultaneously, like jumping rope. According to the Jump Rope Institute, jumping helps to develop the left and right hemispheres of the brain, to further improve spatial awareness and reading skills, and increases memory and mental alertness. It’s not a coincidence that so many high-level athletes depend on jumping rope.
I will be talking more about how to up your mental game in future posts, so stay-tuned!
Step 5: Enjoy the Journey! Living in the moment and enjoying yourself are so important. Your workout (and for that matter your life) shouldn’t be boring.
Embracing the process is key in creating a healthy, fit lifestyle. Whether you use music to help you get into the zone or speak affirmations to push you through your routine, finding ways to boost your workout is so important. For many, jumping rope can awaken the senses and become highly meditative. Just remember to relish in the journey because you’re worth it! Keep jumping.
How Do I Get A Gravity Rope?
We’ve been inundated with questions about how to get a Gravity Rope. Well, the bad news is the Gravity Rope and Gravity Rope fitness program are not for sale yet. But, don’t despair, you’ll be able to pre-order your own Gravity Rope and fitness program soon.
We plan to launch a Kickstarter campaign at the end of the year. You’ll be able to pre-order your own Gravity Rope (along with the fitness program and other goodies) through our Kickstarter campaign. If you haven’t already, please enter your email to stay updated on our progress!
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