This article was originally written by Lawrence Cole
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In the age of information, many of the principles of health and fitness have become all but common knowledge.
Nevertheless, there still is a very clear divide between those people who become successful and losing weight and/or staying fit and those who do not.
Why is that? And what can you do to improve your chances of being in the successful minority as opposed to the unsuccessful majority?
When it comes to the world of weight loss and being fit, there are generally two areas that help to determine what you can expect for your efforts.
A) Genetic Factors
B) Psychological Factors
Most of the information out there is geared around the Genetic factors and how to compensate for any natural shortcomings with a certain amount of physical activity and dieting.
One of the most popular topics along the lines of genetics is that of Body Type.
Anatomical body type is generally broken down into 3 basic groups: Ectomorphic, Mesomorphic, and Endomorphic.
Ectomorphic types are characterized as people with thin, up and down body frames who have the easiest time keeping their weight under control. Basketball players and runway models will often fit into this category.
Mesomorphic body types are characterized as people with athletic frames and generally muscular, well-proportioned bodies. Bodybuilders and dancers will often fit in here.
Endomorphic body types tend to be generally round figures and will often have the most trouble in keeping unwanted weight off of their bodies.
Most of us are combinations of two or more of these types with one being more dominant than the others.
One important note about these anatomical types is that while they may give some insight to how you look on the outside, they can deceive us as to how healthy you are internally. Many people who may be “thin” are literally decaying inside due to bad habits (poor diet, smoking, lack of exercise).
By contrast, there are many people who are not stereotypically thin, but are pictures of healthy due to healthy lifestyles (proper nutrition, physical activity).
The general role of knowing your body type is to get an explanation of how your body will tend to respond to your diet and lifestyle in terms of how easy or challenging it may be for you to “hold it together” in certain areas. Another way of classifying your body is by which of your hormone-producing glands dominates the way you process nutrients in the food you eat.
These Glandular (“metabolic”) types will fall into one of 4 categories: Adrenal, Thyroidal, Pituitary, or Gonadal. The explanation of each is very similar to that of the anatomical body types above. The adrenal type tends to correspond with the mesomorphic anatomical type. The thyroidal is similar to the ectomorphic, and the pituitary to the endomorphic.
The gonadal type is a women-only classification that is a hybrid of being slender on the top but somewhat larger below the waist with a greater amount of body fat. The gonadal body type among women is more commonly referred to as being “pear shaped”.
There is a third type of body classification that you may come across that originated in Ancient India. It has to do with “Doshas” – how the energy fields of the earth and your physical mass interact to influence how you feel.
This is not directly related to the physical aspect of weight loss but tends to give you an idea on how what psychological advantages or challenges you may have when it comes to getting and staying fit.
This brings me to a major point of clarity in this article:
As valuable as all of the body type information may be to learning your body, it is not the “end all” that it is often marketed to be.
You are neither “guaranteed” to look and feel great nor “doomed” to be overweight and unhealthy simply based on your genetics and body classification. Body types should only be used to give you insight on what advantages or challenges that you may have in your quest for life-long fitness—not a life or death sentence that limits what you can achieve.
In reality, the Psychological factors related to how you look and feel are really where the rubber meets the road in weight loss and staying healthy and fit.
It is here that you will find the tools to overcome whatever physical challenges that you are faced with. Therefore, it is here where you absolutely focus the MAJORITY of your energy if you are become and stay successful with your health and fitness goals.
One thing that many people do not consider is how the knowledge of their “body type” and what that means affects their psychological outlook in the first place.
Many “fit” people who look great because they eat right and exercise do so because they already believe that they’ve “got something” that is valuable and maintained. Therefore, their healthy lifestyle is just a matter of course.
The importance of the effect that your outlook on your results cannot be ignored. To put it plainly, your outLOOK directly affects your outPUT.
If you don’t happen to be one of those people who seem to “naturally” have it together when it comes to your body (or you have been before but have since lost the “magic”), then what you will need to do is simply tap into the strength of your own psyche to push you toward success.
There are 5 Key Steps that you need to follow in order to take advantage of your own reservoirs of power, drive, and confidence.
1) Self Acceptance
In order for ANY of this to work, you will want to either have or develop of certain level of self acceptance for your body and all of its great points as well as its weaknesses.
This doesn’t mean that you have to be satisfied with yourself when you may be out of shape. What is DOES mean, however, is that you have to be “ok” with having YOUR “best body”—not someone else’s.
2) Find the Keys to Your Own Motivation
Different things work for different people. While there may be 4 or 5 body types, there are even more different personality types. You may want to try several different types of motivational tools to see which one you respond to best for the results you want. Here are a few ideas of things to try:
– Having a workout/diet buddy (or buddies)
– Motivational books and tapes
– Imagining how you will look and feel when you reach YOUR personal best
– Thinking of the quality of life benefits of being healthy and fit
..And there are tons more.
3) Setting Attainable Goals after You’ve Gotten #1 and #2 Firmly Under Your Belt
Most people try to simply pull random goals out of the sky. This can often lead to first failure then disappointment when issues with self acceptance are combined with a lack of understanding what motivates you.
4) Drown Yourself in Those Things that Motivate You
Once you’ve figured out what works for you, DROWN yourself in it! If it works, then work IT. Take full advantage of the #1 factor in successfully achieving weight loss and maintaining physical fitness.
5) Maintain Your Progress by Making Fitness a Lifestyle
As many of you know by now, I am NOT a fan of traditional diets. They simply do not work. More than anything else, it is your day-to-day lifestyle that will determine what results you get, and your psychological outlook is what either drives you to or pulls you away from the activities that form that lifestyle.
There is simply no reason on earth that you cannot be one of the “Successful” people when it comes to weight loss and fitness.
Educate yourself on your body’s strengths and weaknesses, then develop a winning attitude by provided your psyche with effective motivation that it will respond to. That’s the hardest part. And its very doable with the right information and coaching, which is why I came up with the YourBestBodyNOW web site and weight loss program for people just like you. The rest, as they say, is will be a cinch.
Your Lifestyle and Fitness Coach