We live in a world of perpetual shortcuts.
Get rich quick, lose weight fast, instantly feel better!
Bold promises that are shoved down our throats through attention-grabbing ad campaigns that feel more like propaganda at times.
In rare circumstances have these claims turned out to be accurate and even still come with more negatives than positives.
One experience with this idea comes to mind. One summer, my physique was getting a little fluffy leading up to a trip to the Florida Keys. Thirsty for abs and only a month left before the trip, I was forced to take drastic measures. I went to the local meathead supplement shop and told them about my lofty goals of dropping 15 pounds in less than 4 weeks.
Bear in mind that the most weight that can be lost healthily in a week is about 2 pounds. That number is following a finely tuned caloric intake of clean foods. Something I definitely wasn’t doing at this time in my life.
The all too typical gym bro at the supplement store recommended a fat burner used by competitive body-builders. In regards to supplements, powerful fat burners share about the same health and physical benefits of cocaine.
Over the next month, I took the recommended dosage and lost an insane amount of weight, all while still drinking. After the 4 week cycle of fat burners, I lost a whopping 16 pounds. That is more than 4 pounds a week!
I did it! I reached my goal weight and then some. The issue is that my life was a living hell for the month leading up to vacation, and it ruined the first day of the trip.
Part of the reason I lost so much weight on the fat-burner, is that I was taking so much caffeine and questionably legal stimulants that I found myself nauseated for the first half of the day. This, in turn, made the thought of food unbearable till around 1 pm. If you don’t eat, then you definitely will lose weight, but this wasn’t the scientific approach to fasts I practice today. These were jittery, anxiety-filled, on the verge of puking half days of starvation.
Turns out, the biggest reason I was losing weight is that fat burners are diuretics (they make you pee a lot). I was excreting way more fluids than I was putting in my body. A month of dehydration sucked all the water weight out of my body. Leaving me with a soft six-pack of abs.
I came into the vacation, starved and dehydrated. On the first day (Also my first off the fat burner), my appetite came back, and I didn’t hold back. I ate everything in sight and downed vodka Gatorade until I crashed off a sugar high around 8 pm and woke up the next day, literally 12 pounds heavier. My abs were gone, and my water weight was back.
So my quick fix plan didn’t work. I was miserable for an entire month, and my results lasted for at most 10 hours. Technically, I did “Lose weight fast!” but at an extreme cost, that ultimately left me back to square one.
What I learned from this quick fix experience, is that in almost all circumstances, the costs far outweighed the benefits.
Other examples include get-rich-quick schemes that ruin friendships. Antidepressants that make you numb to emotional pain, but deflated in the bedroom. Surgeries for injuries that would have healed faster in physical therapy than the time it takes to recover from the procedure.
Time in time again, western civilization takes the shortcut instead of the right way to succeed.
99 times out of 100, shortcuts lead to shortcomings.
What leads to results are well thought out, and holistic plans backed up by hard work and discipline.
If you want to lose weight and keep it off, while staying healthy, then you have to change habits, not add new ones. Turning pizza into salads and Netflix into workouts isn’t as appealing as a magic pill to take all your fat away, but nothing in life worth doing is easy.
What wellness goal do you have?
If that goal is achieved within a month, then it is either too easy or not going to last. If you have an example of where I am wrong, then I would love to hear it.
Wellness requires effort in all aspects of life to produce results. You can’t be happy without being healthy, and no one wants to be wealthy with no friends. There is no pill or 4-hour seminar that is going to change that.
Think about the specific goals you are working toward right now.
Is the path being taken sustainable in the long run?
Are you sacrificing health and happiness to get there?
In what ways could you change this to incorporate more wholesome methods?
Are you avoiding the time and work it really takes?
All of our goals should leave us happy and healthy. That is what wellness is all about.
Looking, feeling, and being great will never be attributes seen in the people who seek out a quick path to success.
That is the truth that I have found to be evident over and over again.
With big love,