Pace Your Progress

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“Oh I’m in a hurry to get things done
Oh I rush and rush until life’s no fun
All I really gotta do is live and die
But I’m in a hurry and don’t know why

I hear a voice
That say’s I’m running behind
I better pick up my pace
It’s a race
And there ain’t no room
For someone in second place.”

-“I’m in a Hurry (And Don’t Know Why)” by Alabama

“Strange, what being forced to slow down could do to a person.”
― Nicholas Sparks, The Last Song

Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

I came up with this topic one evening when it was snowing heavy.  I was about to go to a networking meeting.  It was a half hour away at night.  Looking outside and speaking with my friends, the roads were bad.  i didn’t end up going, but it did make me think: just like driving, there are times to go fast and times to pace yourself.   Both life and losing weight are marathon sand we need to pace ourselves.

I’m a millennial.  I grew up in a time of instant gratification- fast food, the internet, text messages, express checkouts.  We are the now generation.  We want it all now.  We don’t want to be told to wait.  We are entitled to gain all of life’s pleasures.  While this may be ok for some instances, it’s no way to live.  Living life in the fast lane burns people out.  It gets exhausting.  We are not meant for constant progress or getting it all at once.

I have met so many people who want to lose weight or make change and look for results RIGHT AWAY.  They want the quick, instant fix.  However, like most journeys, the shortcut doesn’t have lasting effects.  It usually is not sustainable over the long term.  Most people who lose weight very quickly tend to gain some or even all of it back.  However, those who take a slow and steady approach not only lose the weight and keep it off, but also have a better outlook on life.  They attack a problem head on but patiently.  On the way, these people gain confidence and strength.

Think about this:  most professional athletes compete for a handful of months out of the year.  Yet, they TRAIN for the majority of the year.  The (smart) athletes know the quick fixes such as doping, steroids, and magic bullets, may have short term gains.  But, the consequences such as suspensions, legal troubles, and fines are not worth the risk.  They understand that their season and career is a journey.  They need to be prepared for long stints of ups and downs.  They need to cultivate patience in order to reach their goals.

I need to constantly remind myself the same thing.  I have goals and ambitions.  There are many experiences I want to have.  They will not all occur at once.  That would be overwhelming.  I appreciate and value things more if I have to invest time and energy into them.  Patience is an important quality to have.  Keep that in mind the next time you want to achieve a goal. Remember to breathe and to love yourself through the process.  It might just save your sanity.   As Always, Eat, Move, and Improve! 

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