I take my car to the mechanic to argue how I can do a better job.
Reading that statement you would automatically think what a moron. Who on earth would do that?
Well yeah, you could find someone doing this if you really looked long and hard enough. The statement is some I use with my clients to work on building the idea that the human body can be thought of as a machine for a means or purpose. In this case, life.
Your car needs particular parts to make sure it starts when you need it to. It takes you wherever you need to go, provided you’re not using it as a means of flying or any underwater activities.
It gives you a level of safety, protection and comfort.
Taking the car analogy to the human body, we need various parts to keep ourselves alive. It’s a no-brainer (see there is one part already). Heart, lungs, stomach, liver, kidneys, muscles, bones, nerves, blah, blah, blah.
When your car, cause let’s be real here. Anyone one of us, once over the age of 16 have at least driven a car at some point in our lives. When your car is in need to regular service or repair, you take it the mechanic, yes? Of course, if you service it yourself that’s ok too. Many of us take our cars to the mechanic with the predetermined knowledge that we are going to a professional to get the best possible outcome for our car. We expect they will check the engines, clean the oils, fix the spark plugs, gears, breaks, tyres and who knows what else.
Pick up the car when it’s done. Pay the price and drive away. The car is running good, no hassles. Life carries on.
Changing the car to your body. We get our concerns with our health. So we go to the doctor when we are sick. Dentist when some of you out their get fillings. Physiotherapist or Myotherapist (P.S. I know a really good guy for Myotherapy for injuries, massage and aches. The list goes on).
Approaching these professionals in their field, again leads you to the predetermined thoughts of they know what they are doing, almost an automatic trust.
One day your car has literally the blinking light going to let you know, petrol is at an all-time low right now. You are pushing the chance of running out while driving to your destination. You have to get to a place that you know is 50km away, so some distance.
Put the pedal to the metal and you fly down the road, breaking suddenly to manoeuvre around slower drivers (or people actually doing the speed limits) strain the breaks. Take unknowing shortcuts. Still stressing that you could still run out of petrol at any minute.
You sweat and swear, yell and throw your hand out for the international sign for WTF. Still. You made it. Engine hot, just running on fumes and your white-knuckle grip on the wheel.
Car is now a mess. Engine is thrashed. Breaks are far worse due to the excessive slamming on and off at high speeds. You’re may be covered in stress and sweat and you can’t sleep at night because you have to find the money for the extra amount to pay for the car service, due to the beating you gave the car. Now it struggles to get to the same destination because it’s not working as efficiently due to your need to get there right now on hardly any fuel and get there right now yesterday.
Bringing back the body analogy with this scenario. You want to lose 40 kg desperately. You have had a bad lifestyle for a long time of sitting down too much for too long. Eating all those good feeling foods, whatever they are for you and you are going to turn a lifetime of self-abuse into a 40kg victory in the next 12 weeks.
First thing. Drop the calories, eating less means losing weight yeah? Ok, doing that. Next thing, do more, way more. You jump on the machines at the gym or you run around your local area. Join a group class and pump out reps, sweat and heavy breathing. You lose some weight. Not enough. So you think. Ok drop more calories, exercise more and the cycle repeats itself. You find you sleep less. You’re eating what you think is healthy and not getting anywhere. Some will then throw the white flag up and just say it’s all too much. Others will seek extreme methods that do not last, surgery, drugs basically the extremes.
After a while. Things stop. You notice the weight stays the same. Then start to creep back up. Stressed out you seek who can I go and see about this? Dr Google is one option or a personal trainer. Sitting across a desk or table in the gym with the look of puppy dog eyes waiting for the trainer to present the one single bone treat that will turn you from a drooling bulldog into a graceful greyhound.
As I said before, your body is like a car. You have just thrashed yourself silly chasing something that isn’t impossible but by taking shortcuts or going balls to the wall, doing more and eating less. Your body has reached a state of which it is stressed. Exhausted. In some level of pain and starvation.
You, me, we are not all the same. Different make and models. A car is pretty standard in its basic design. This is where confusion reigns down on us all as we search for the single answer to fix our situation. The one thing that will make everything easier and quicker to change ourselves.
So at the gym, your discussions with the trainer go well. Working out what you want, how you want to look and feel. When can we get started? Ok. First thing, let’s bring up your calories and get you moving at least. Slamming the breaks sounds in your head. No, no, no, no this is not while you’re at the gym talking to this training about adding calories back. All that weight will come back on. What rubbish. This guy has no idea.
Doing more and taking out less is the way to go.
I am here to say that is totally incorrect. Hence why would you argue with the trainer about it, if you have come to them in need of help when all else has failed?
Diets worked for a while. Portion control lasted 3 weeks. Calories counting? Lost track of that between breakfast and that shake and chocolate bar and cheesecake, but that’s ok, my calories are still in line. Had surgery because we reached the point of it being a medical condition, rather than work on balance and understand you went for the easy option. Stack it on; cut it off. Oh, it’s back on again.
Car needs oil, so you add oil. Car needs petrol, in goes unleaded, premium or diesel. Breaks need replacing, wipers fixed, gears changed.
Stone cold hard truth.
You can’t apply the same thinking to your body. Depressing I know. You wanted the straight answer from me. Nope. Not going to get it because it does not exist.
Doing more and eating less has its place if balanced right and organised in a way that is playable to your daily routines. Taking into understanding that we want the results of society now, because of other underlining reasons. Bullies, friends, families, lovers, media and so on.
We are first to see those who have changed themselves in 12 weeks, but hardly ever see the majority of others who could have taken 12 years.
Our bodies will and are giving signs one way or another to us to say, something isn’t going right. Weight gain is the easiest to see, but have you considered some of the following:
Stress, anxiety, skin irritations or rash any area of the body. Stomach bloating, excessive wind, constipation, frequent visits to the toilet. Quick to anger or even depression, fatigue. Tired after eating foods like pasta or rice; always need a fix. Can’t think straight, bad sleep, unable to remember any dreams or even reach the stage of REM. Joints ache, constant headaches.
This list can go on, but I would be extremely surprised if anyone read that previous text and said I have none of those going on or experienced. In fact, I will just say it you’re a liar if you don’t because at some point these particular issues will pop up due to daily life. How many of these can be fixed by fixing a diet? A good amount. Some might need a systematic way of eating and a little help from other things like massage or yoga or even exercise.
It will still come back to needing to reset yourself one way or another. If you keep thinking that by dropping calories and exercising to the extreme is going to bring your better health changes then you are mistaken. If it truly was the case, wouldn’t we all be lean, strong, toned, skinny whatever the word you want to pick?
If seeking a well-rounded and experienced trainer about your needs, why argue or go against what they are saying? Why go to the mechanic after you have torn the car to shreds then say you can fix it yourself or do a better job? How is it that your trainer falls into the category of ‘I’m not really listening to you, buddy’.
The human body won’t be fixed ever by a wonder pill or a magic formula that we all follow. There are ‘guidelines’ to work from, but this does not mean that ‘guideline’ number twelve, which works for you, will work for the next person or the person after that.
We can use the analogy of our body being like a car, but it won’t mean we fix it in the same way. Yet we do need to refuel sometimes, bring calories back up, top up the petrol tank. Slow down and ease off the accelerator to rest. Take a planned route or ease off the training level to activity recover from stress. Put premium petrol into the engine while taking in better food options like meats and vegetables. Supplements are like adding the fluffy dice to your review mirror; they can be used, but are not necessary all the time plus the dice look stupid.