Choose to be the best you can be

When you’re transitioning from an unhealthy lifestyle to a new one, it can be really difficult to make new changes and stick to them. There’s a reason for this, and it isn’t that you are weak or have too little willpower or just don’t have it in you…you are actually training your mind, and changing the way your brain works, and that isn’t easy!

When we develop habits, we create little neuropathways in our brain that transmit signals. It’s a tiny little electric connection that makes us repeat our patterns. Our brain begins just working on autopilot:

  • Wake up
  • Don’t work out
  • Get showered and dressed
  • Brush teeth
  • Skip breakfast
  • Drive to work
  • Eat junk food at work.
  • Choose comforting food for lunch because nothing else is available.

… and so on.

Here’s how the above choices could be improved:

  • Wake up an hour or so before you normally would
  • Go for a run or a gym workout
  • Get showered and dressed
  • Brush teeth
  • Have breakfast, prepare food for the day, walk to work
  • Eat prepared food at work.
  • Choose a good healthy lunch that you’ve already prepared and eat enough healthy food throughout the day so that you don’t have a sugar / mid afternoon crash. 🙂

Your choices

Every part of your life is made up if little decisions. Choices you make which determine who you are and what you become. Basic choices include eating, sleeping, drinking, exercise. Other choices include how you bring up your family, how you interact in relationships, how you earn, save and spend money.

The choices we make are endless, and they make us into the people we become. If you choose to live unhealthily, be it lack of exercise, poor food choices, excess alcohol, or excess of just about anything, you and your body will live with (or die with) the consequences.

If you choose to live a healthy life, with a healthy balanced diet, regular exercise and good living, the chances are you, your body and your family will benefit. 🙂

So how can you change your choices to become healthier?

Changing the choices you make can be instrumental to becoming more healthy. All you need to do is look at your life and see what you think you can change to make you more heathly. Take one thing at a time, and decide change it for the better.

Each small change you make will have knock on effects and add up to you becoming a better version of you. Don’t change too much at once, but make small individual changes over time and in the long run you’ll notice the difference and improvements.

Training your mind is the key

When you decide to make a change, you are actually trying to change the way your brain makes these connections.

So your brain is going to be confused, make you feel discomfort, and do everything it can to get you back to those regular patterns, because that is what it knows and operates on. It’s as if your brain has written a script already that you’ve followed all of your life, and you’ve gone and changed the plot! Ever wondered why it’s so hard to break a habit, why people seem to make the same choices over and over? That’s why.

Does this mean we’re doomed to our poor choices forever? Absolutely not. It is very possible to change our habits and our lifestyle, but it takes some planning and dedication.  It is said that if you can stick to a change for between 2 and 4 weeks, it should become habit.  So why not give it a try?

Tips for training your mind

A helpful strategy to put in place is to not just eliminate bad habits, but to replace them with new ones.

For example, instead of drinking maybe 3-4 cans of diet coke a day, I changed my daily drink to water. I made sure I always had a bottle of cold water at my desk and tried to get into the habit of filling it up and drinking 2-3 litres a day. Another problem I faced was always drinking diet coke when I was out for meals. Instead I just started opting for mineral water of soda water. Now it’s just normal for me (although I do get questioned all the time if I want lime in my soda… Did I ask for lime? No. Well no I don’t then.)

Another bad habit I wanted to kick was drinking alcohol. After starting drinking at the tender age of 11, 18 years later aged 29 I was fed up of it. I was fed up of the hangovers, the money, the feeling of losing control. I was fed up of getting drink every weekend and feeling rough for days after it.  It had just become something I and a lot of others did, but something I really wasn’t enjoying anymore.

I was fed up of putting my body through all this then expecting my body to perform when I tried to exercise. I quit. I just decided one day after a really bad hangover (sick 8 times, bile and everything :-S), that it wasn’t for me. I replaced it with eating out, going out, having fun, walks, cycles or going to the cinema. If I did go out on nights out I’d drink soda water (my tipple used to be vodka and soda, and it didn’t taste much different without the vodka!)  I got questionned a lot by it, but I tried not to care and tried to stick to my decision.  And it worked.

Those are just two of my habits (drink related!) that I’ve changed that have led to me being the fittest and healthiest I’ve ever been. Getting more water and quitting alcohol has helped me to lose 27lbs and 10% body fat in 4 years. It’s helped me to perform, to be able to run marathons, swim for miles and achieve great things including my ideal weight and my racing weight.

Other changes over that time include:

  • Eating healthier,
  • Preparing my food for the day and taking it to work (do I don’t snack on crap),
  • Making exercise an every day part of my life, running, walking, swimming, training, cycling, hiking.
  • Watching what I spend and save.

But there is still room for improvement, there’s always room for little changes to take place so that I can become the best I can be.

Moving forward

Making over your lifestyle is truly a journey, a very worthwhile one, but just like every journey, it must be taken one step at a time.

With healthy habit replacements, you will slowly but surely create new neuropathways for your brain to function with. This is the key that will keep you moving forward to your destination, and living a long and healthy life.

What are the things you would like to change in your life?

Write them down and choose some to take action on. You too can become the best you can be, you just need to choose to be it, and be it! 🙂 

Here are some of the areas in your life you could consider changing for the better (choose 1-5 areas or changes):

  • Health, Happiness, Well Being
  • Attitude, Beliefs, Values
  • Fitness, Exercise, Food (and drink)
  • Relationships, Family, Friends
  • Fun, Recreation, Social
  • Career, Aspirations, Progression
  • Finances, Incomings, Outgoings
  • Self Development, Goals, Motivation.

You can test these areas out here by taking my Super Human Test. 🙂

Right now I have 4 small but quite life changing goals on my horizon. I won’t tell you what they are but once I get them right they should lead to me being a more happy and fulfiled version of me.  The best version of me. 🙂

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3 Responses to Choose to be the best you can be

  1. Pingback: Why worry? | Lorn Pearson Trains…

  2. Mol says:

    Hi Lorn,

    I feel very inspired by your writing and life story. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    This article is very similar to the thoughts I was having during my run today. Indeed life is just a search for the best version of you, and to be happy being that. It is indeed a real victory to be able to find this person within our lifetime.

    I have set my sights on a triathlon early next year and have decided to make those small much needed changes everyday to reach my goal. If you have any good links to triathlon training for beginners , do share.

    Thanks! 🙂
    Mol

    • lornpearson says:

      Hi Mol. Thanks for the comment and nice words. I used Joe Freil’s Traihtlon Bible which has very good information about training in it. It might be a bit old now, but the content is probably still good. Or go to my search bar and put in triathlon, see what come up. I’ve done one as a beginner, then change back to running.

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