This Should Be Your #1 Fitness Goal

More than Alex Trebeck talks about how all answers have to be in the form of a question.

More than the latest Bachelorette talks about how “challenging this journey has been”.

More than Maury talks about whether or not you are the father.

I talk a lot about fitness with a lot of different people.

And while I’m happy to discuss everything from energy systems to squat stance to the merits of playing slow, emotional music while push pressing (don’t knock it ‘til you try it), as someone who talks to a lot of potential clients the subject of fitness goals comes up every time.

Not surprisingly, certain themes continually pop up when people explain what outcomes would lead them to fitness nirvana (Side note: the band Nirvana is also good to listen to when push pressing).

There’s the tone up, lose body fat, get-some-muscle-but-not-too-much-muscle, body composition improvement crowd.

There’s the squat 500lbs, bench what I used to in high school, show my kid that his old man is still strong strength training crew.

Then there’s the health scare, quality of life, want to be able to chase my kids, know your “why” lifestyle squad.

And I love all of them.

No, seriously, I do. If you have a strong connection to your reason for training you are more likely to train. And I’m all for training.

Which is the perfect segue to the subject of this post – what should be your first and foremost training goal.

I know, I know. You don’t want some bald New York asshole telling you what your goals should be. Fair enough. But before you get too defensive, the goal that I am about to set for you is the only thing that is going to make any and all of those other goals possible. Are you ready for it?

Don’t quit.

Simple, right? Simple but not easy.

Because so, so, so many people quit. After a week or a month or a training cycle or a quarter or a year or whatever arbitrary amount of time that has allowed them to come to the indisputable conclusion that what they are doing clearly (clearly!) does not work.

You need to dedicate 568 days to something before you know whether or not it works.

Ok, that’s not true. I just made that number up. I wish I had a specific number of days or weeks or months that I could just drop on you to convince you not to quit before your goals are realized. But that number doesn’t exist. It depends on your goals, your history, your age, your level of commitment and so many other “x” factors that it would be nearly impossible to pinpoint.

But I can tell you this. After years and years and years of being in gyms and training, most people quit way too early. Don’t be one of those people.

Persistence. Fortitude. Stubbornness. Whatever you want to call it, your ability to keep coming back even when the progress is slow or stalls, when motivation doesn’t exist, when the financial commitments seem daunting, when you just plain don’t feel like it anymore — that’s the secret to achieving every goal you have. True in fitness. True in life.

Will I see you out on the training floor in 5 weeks or 5 months or 5 years from now? So hard to say. But I hope I do. Because it will mean both you and I have met the most important goal. We didn’t quit.

And then, just like on the Bachelorette, you and I can smile and reminisce on just how challenging the journey has been.