Trying to Get Into Shape and Lose Fat – Maybe I Can Help You

Let me say that this may be a longer post than normal due to the subject matter, so it will be broken up into three separate posts. 

An interesting statistic that I wrote in a previous post was that “22% of people give up on their New Year’s Resolution in the first week and by the end of March more than 50% will have completely quit their resolutions.”
With losing weight being one of the most popular New Year’s Resolutions amongst the general public and unquestionably amongst gay men; some of us may be struggling to accomplish this goal.As I also stated in my other post; I think the reason some of us fall off the wagon is because we either don’t set accurate or realistic goals and we don’t perhaps take into consideration the level of discipline or will power it will take to accomplish our resolutions.

We need to make sure we set realistic measurable goals for our resolutions.  With losing weight or getting into shape being the obvious topic here; maybe I can provide you some assistance.

Let me give a quick background on myself when it comes to this topic.

Picture Being a chubby kid all my life (husky if you will :-), I decided to go on the quest of losing weight in my early 20’s, when my 5 foot 9 inch frame had reached 205lbs.  Not happy with what I looked like naked, I did like most and attempted to lose weight and began to diet.  The rave fade diet at the time was Atkins; and while on the Atkins diet, I lost 40lbs.  But I was not happy…why?  Because I was now a 160lb chubby person with still no muscle tone or definition…dammit!  In my head I knew what I wanted to look like and assumed running 3 miles in the morning and 3 miles at night while eating no / low carbs was the way to do it.  WRONG!And YES, all 40lbs of weight came right back as soon as the diet was over.  So, as the years went on, I continued to struggle with my weight.  Finally, I decided to join a gym.  I started lifting a little weights and doing a lot of cardio and I was still not happy with my lack luster results.I was all over the place in the gym; confused with no idea of what to do or how to do it.  No idea really of what to eat or when to eat.  Clueless about proper form while working out, clueless about proper nutrition and clueless about supplementation.  I was lost.

Finally after some minor injuries in the gym due to poor form I decided something had to change.  I needed to figure out a plan if I wanted to continue with my quest.  That is when I picked up an issue of Muscle and Fitness magazine and simply began to read and try and get an understanding of what in the world I was attempting to do. 

At the time I didn’t know, but picking up this magazine was one of the most important things I did.  The reason is because it aided me in my quest to seek and gain the knowledge and know-how to go about the correct path of reaching my goals.
I finally began to understand that there is a big difference between losing weight and burning fat...lifting weights was the key.

This all happed about 6-8 years ago and while I have fallen off the wagon at times; I have a strong knowledge base and formula of how to get into shape through my years of reading and research…I have always been able to get back in suitable shape with the appropriate planning.  So let me share 10 of my focus areas with you, in hopes of helping you set your own path.  I know some of the things said will be repetitive, but this is intintinal and by design 🙂

Picture1. If You Think It, You Can Achieve It…Well Maybe?

First I will say, don’t just say to yourself you want to lose weight or get in shape.  Say to yourself you would like a “Life Style Change”.  Losing weight or getting into shape can be temporary; changing your life style can be permanent and have more of an impact.Don’t just attempt to loose weight to go to a class reunion or to some gay pride event in Miami or any other city.  This may be okay if this is a short term goal or bench mark on your road to success; however loosing weight for these reasons can mean you are only doing this for others and not yourself…and that is never a good idea.Words and your mind are very powerful tools…use it to your advantage and don’t sabotage yourself.  Remember you are not dieting but you are seeking a “Life Style Change”.


Picture2. Set Realistic and Measurable Goals.Do you have only 2 days a week to work out?  If you goal is to lose say 30lbs in 30 days and you only have 2 days a week to work out and you really don’t want to alter your eating habits guess what?  It is going to take longer to reach your goals and chances are you will fail.Setting Realistic and Measurable Goals is very important because you don’t want to set yourself up for failure before you even really get started.  During this planning phase take the time to figure out your fitness goals, amount of time you can dedicate to working out per week, and work out a budget for any gym fees, food, nutrition and supplementation changes.

Losing a certain amount of weight may be a measurable goal for some; however to me I say don’t weigh yourself, ignore the scale and focus on how you look in the mirror versus what amount of weight the scales says.  Think about it like this; if you weighed 200lbs or 120lbs but think you look great naked, would you really care about how much you weigh?

Picture 3. Image is Everything.  Visualize the Way You Want Yourself to Appear.

Visualize how you would like to appear.  I would suggest a short term image and a long term image.  These images can be from your imagination or from pictures in magazines.  The images may vary in a great degree or be very similar.  These could be images of people with smaller frames, to beach bodies with a flat stomachs, or a more muscular chiseled frame with a six pack…it is what ever images you can visualize yourself comfortably with and would like to appear as.Now once you have selected these images, ask yourself a couple of questions…

  • Are the images you have selected realistic and healthy for you?
  • What is the time frame you have given yourself to reach this type of body image transformation? Is it 3 months, 6 months, 1 year etc?
  • Is the image you have chosen for yourself realistic for your body type?
  • Is this body image something that is long lasting for you?
  • Are you willing to put in the effort of maintaining it?

Picture4. You are Gonna Get Out, What You Put In!

When it comes to working out…you get out of it what you put in it.  This may go for any task or any other functions in your life.  If you want a lean, muscular body, you have to be willing to put in the time and effort for exercise and alter your meals and calories to achieve this.  So if you don’t have a lot of time and effort to put in, set your goals to match your input and output so you won’t end up sabotaging yourself and failing in your fitness goals.

Well I hope my first four helpful tips can benefit you and your fitness goals.  Stay turned for the next post, which will contain tips 5 through 7.

Feel free to leave your comments or questions.