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Fit For Life: It’s Not Supposed to be Easy

Sunday, April 29, 2018


If it were easy everyone would be millionaires with 6 pack abs.

Those were the words that came out of my coach’s mouth while I was quivering holding a plank.

Then as I was ready to quit I started thinking.

I was thinking that EVERYTHING we do that nets us something positive in the end is difficult, sometimes it seems impossible.

Trying to get fit and stay healthy, trying to run a successful business, trying to raise a family, trying to find the time to do the things we enjoy the most.

All of the above that I just mentioned are extremely difficult, and if you are doing any or all of these things, you can consider yourself a pretty amazing person. Because with most people, when the going gets tough, they quit.  

That’s what kept me from dropping out of the plank hold. I started saying to myself “This isn’t impossible. Man up. If you want to look good by summer, you better not drop.” So, I sucked it up and completed the hold. It would have been easier to drop early, but it didn’t kill me, and by exerting that little extra effort, I felt better both physically and mentally for not quitting.

Back to the term “If it were easy, everyone would be doing it”. This term holds true, because very few people are wealthy, and very few people are truly fit and healthy, due to the fact that the easy way is very seldom the best way.

Let’s look at some facts.

When the alarm clock goes off in the morning, it is a lot easier to roll over and go back to sleep. A lot easier than prying yourself from under the covers, getting dressed in the dark, and going somewhere to stress your heart and body, get sweaty, sore and fatigued.

Now I know I am not doing a very good job selling my program to those of you reading this that don’t work out, but once you overcome all the unappealing factors of exercise, it’s totally worth it.

Those of you that do workout know the feeling of accomplishment when you complete a workout. When you are sweaty, your muscles are shaking, then you hear “high five time”, you feel victorious and complete.

Just knowing that you did something positive for yourself is mentally and physically satisfying.

It’s even more satisfying because it wasn’t easy, and you know that very few people have the drive and discipline that you do. You will never regret getting your work out in and doing something to improve your health and fitness. I guarantee it.

The other task that is extremely difficult, and sometimes seems nearly impossible is trying to earn a good living. Especially trying to run a business.

Yes, it’s easier to work a menial job with zero responsibility but in order to get ahead in life, you need to climb the corporate ladder, or if you work for yourself, be on point all the time.

If you show up late for work every day, take naps under the desk, go for extended lunches, and call in sick all the time, it’s unlikely you will be positioning yourself for raises and promotions. The same goes for working for yourself. You have responsibilities that nobody else sees but you. Making sure clients are happy and developing a team of employees takes a lot of time, effort, and resiliency. Yes, it’s easier to be lazy, work less and slack off all the time, but is easier better?

Eventually, like working out, you get stronger, and put yourself in a position to make your situation better. Yes, it’s difficult to get in shape and make money, but in the long run, it usually all pays off.

We will always face adversity, and from time to time, we will go through slumps where we feel like giving up, but when you tell yourself that nothing is impossible, and quitting won’t make things better, you gather the strength and ability to get back on track. Most of my business mentors have had setbacks, and some have almost gone broke, but with the right mindset and persistence, nothing is impossible.

We don’t need to be perfect all the time. We are not Olympians competing for fractions of a second. Most of us are folks trying to stay healthy and earn a good living, so we can enjoy and live a quality life. But we need to understand that nothing good comes our way unless we put in the hard work.

Remember, it’s easy to be broke and unhealthy, but that’s not what we want for ourselves. There is no pride in being average, and if you want to be great and do great things for yourself and others, you need to avoid easy, and do what’s best to improve your situation.

Also take note that nobody that earns a million dollars a year, or has 6 pack abs, achieved it by taking the easy way!!

So, while you are out there grinding it out, know that you are a minority, but you are not alone, so stay strong, and keep fighting!!

Matt Espeut, GoLocal's Health & Lifestyle Contributor has been a personal trainer and health & fitnesss consultant for over 25 years. He is the owner of Fitness Profiles, a one on one, and small group personal training company, as well as Providence Fit Body Boot Camp, located at 1284 North Main St., on the Providence/Pawtucket line. You can reach Matt at (401) 453-3200; on Facebook at "Matt Espeut", and on Twitter at @MattEspeut. "We’re all in this life together – let’s make it a healthy one.


Related Slideshow: The 7 Best Health and Fitness Apps

Here is a list of some of the most obsession worthy health apps.

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MapMyRun is the number one selling running app for a reason:  it is easy to use, offers community support if you want it, and tracks and stores your exact routes for you.  If you are training for a race or a serious runner, users say that the extra perks in the upgraded paid version are well worth it. 

Made for iPhone, Android and Blackberry 

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MyFitnessPal seems to be the clear favorite amongst everyone polled.  It is helpful not only for the fitness tracking aspect, but everyone polled mentioned how much they loved the food/diet aspect as well. From carb counting for diabetics to recipe ideas to complement your fitness goals, users love this app. 

Made for iPhone and Android

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JeFit is another fitness app that has rave reviews.  It not only tracks progress for you, but offers a huge database of workouts.  While many apps offer community support, JeFit allows you to sync workouts with friends who use the app, offering a (real) virtual buddy system.

Made for iPhone and Android

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Strava gets the highest mark of all the cycling apps.  While it is also great for runners, the cyclers seem particularly inclined towards the fierce competition that can be ignited by this app.  You can track all of your rides via GPS, then you can compare your efforts to those logged by others in the community on the same stretch of road.  You can also join ongoing challenges that can net you great prizes (in addition to bragging rights). 

Made for iPhone and Android

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YogaStudio gets the top vote for Yoga apps.  It has a lengthy collection of full class-length videos available at your fingertips.  Unlike many other apps, this one also allows you to customize your own video yoga class.  All of the poses are done by qualified yoga instructors, and you can find classes suitable for all levels of yogis.

Made for iPhone only

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SimplyBeing meditation app offers the best of both worlds.  You can choose to run this app as a background for your meditation with soothing music or natural sounds that run for a set amount of time.  Conversely, for those of you who have trouble focusing during meditation, you can choose a soothing voice-guided meditation. 

Made for iPhone and Android

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Fooducate is an app all about educating people so that they make healthier food choices.  Although not perfect, this app is easy to use (you can even take pictures of bar codes to instantly find foods in their database).  It gives food a letter grade, tells you the pluses and minuses, and gives you better ranked alternatives.  You can also use it as a weight loss tool by tracking your daily calories. 

Made for iPhone and Android


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