12 weeks ago I wrote a blog about how I was going to use personal blackmail to ensure that I would get to the gym or workout at least four times a week for 12 weeks to get myself into the habits of exercising again. The blackmail involved a $3000 bet that I was hoping not to lose.
Thursday 14th November sparked the end of this $3000 challenge – and guess what? I won!
I mean it isn’t a huge surprise but after the 12 weeks I am feeling really proud of myself and my achievements and dedication. It was week 2 of the blackmail when I decided to sign up to a 12 week challenge at Anytime Fitness Fairy Meadow and that has made the world of difference to the outcome of this challenge. While I am not normally a fan of group workouts I have come to really enjoy the group sessions as well as the one on one sessions with my personal trainer Ben.
Although I normally use my words to motivate, today I am going to use my results to motivate.
At week one I could barely run 1km in 7 minutes 30 seconds. By week 6 I could run it around 6 minutes. Now I can run easily and hit speeds of 13 on the treadmill which is excellent for my HIIT training.
Since week one I have gone from 103cm around my belly to 92cm and losing. This part is really important to me. Increased belly circumference can lead to heart disease and diabetes. Exercising has significantly reduced my risks of an unhealthy life.
It just means you need an extra big slice of motivation with an icy cold glass of never ever ever give up.
In week 1 I couldn’t do a single man push-up (on my toes and I don’t care how sexist that is I will continue to call them man push-ups…possibly because I believe that all men should be able to do them). Now at week 12 I can do up to 10 man push-ups in a row.
Other changes include stamina in exercising, better breathing while exercising, strength, toned arm and leg muscles and loss of fat around my chest and back and dresses and skirts fitting looser!
While I still have a long way to go to reach my goals I am so proud of what my efforts have achieved. Getting to the gym to work out only 4 days a week has made me feel more confident and happier. While I have barely lost any kilos (pounds) I have gained muscle and understand the balance of this.
Personal blackmail has proven to be a very useful motivation technique to get me off the couch and into the lifestyle I desperately wanted. I am now fitter than ever and ready to dive fist first into my next round of fitness and nutrition goals.
All you need to personally blackmail yourself is a goal, a timeframe, a scary sum of money and the threat of that money going to the worst place you can think of. After that it is up to your diligence and perseverance to make things happen. If you really want something you won’t give up even if you keep failing and falling. You will get up, brush it off and try to succeed again. In fact it can sometimes take many tries and fails before you succeed in something. Personal Blackmail gives you just that little bit of extra accountability.
I have spent the last two years trying to get into the habit of exercising regularly and changing my body and habits back into a healthy lifestyle and only now do I feel like I am on the right track. Will I continue to work out at least 4 times per week? Yes. Will I need to personally blackmail myself to make this happen now? No.
What health and fitness goals have you tried to set for yourself and struggled to meet? Sometimes a failure doesn’t mean it is the wrong goal for you. Sometimes it just means you need an extra big slice of motivation with an icy cold glass of never ever ever give up.