It’s a day of two Roger-isms. Get your pen ready.
#1: Action patterns dictate results.
No matter what anyone (you included) thinks of the action patterns at play – exercise, nutrition, sleep, stress management, etc. – results are the ultimate judge. Results are the barometer for success. Results display how your body is responding to what’s actually happening day-to-day.
That’s an incredibly important realization. It removes the importance of do’s and don’ts, should’s and shouldn’ts, and all external judgement. Your program will have its day in results court, and its change in look, feel, and perform will be the only relevant judge and jury.
Three positive actions make sense in light of this statement:
- Take a broad spectrum of results metrics (please, please, please not just the scale). Pictures, circumference measurements, bodyfat calipers, and the scale are my recommendations, based on cost-effective, relatively easy means.
- Adopt a mindset of self-experimentation. Enact action patterns, execute them with vigor, re-measure results, and analyze those results.
- Most importantly, do not be afraid to change course if warranted. If you’ve consistently given the action patterns your all (4-weeks is a solid sample size) and results are falling short, change the action patterns. Do so with no remorse because this is all one big self-experiment and changing course is natural if there are sufficient reasons for it.
#2: One week means nothing, two weeks start a trend, four weeks provide your answer.
There are oh, so many factors that go into results data – time of day, time of month, water retention, last few meals, timing of last workout, type of last workout, last bowel movement (yeah, I said it). Putting too much stock in one snapshot of results is a fool’s errand. Put your head down and keep it moving.
Two weeks begins to paint a picture. You start developing hunches and hypotheses. If your intuition is incredibly strong on something, maybe you tweak it. Resist the urge for an overhaul.
Four weeks delivers your answer on a silver platter. Is this program providing me with the change in look, feel, and perform that I had hoped for? No reading of the tea leaves is necessary; it’ll be there in black and white. If the answer is no, resist the urge to give up. The brave and relentless swallow hard and change course with learned lessons in their back pocket. Then they nail it the next time.
One Week Metric Musings
With all of that said, I have some measurement results for you! In italics is a running dialogue of common reactions for levity’s sake.
Weight – 191 (no change) – Well, this has all been for nothing.
Circumference Measurements (inches) – Chest: 41.5 (-0.5) – so apparently the area you most want to improve has been reduced…fantastic, Waist: 32.75 (-0.5), Abdomen: 34.75 (-0.75) – now that’s more like it, Hips: 42.5 (+2) – is pear shaped a goal here?, Thigh: 24 (no change), Calf: 15.5 (no change), Arm: 14.25 (no change) – good to see those action patterns resulting in the status quo.
Bodyfat Calipers (millimeters) – Back: 12 (-1), Chest: 7 (-3) – nailing this so far, Abdomen: 14 (+1) – not what I’d hoped for, Thigh: 12 (-3), Bicep: 6 (-1), Triceps: 8 (-1) – much, much better.
The italicized text is in jest, but it reinforces an important takeaway. Don’t place too much stock in one week.
My honest thoughts? It’s a small win. This was clean-it-out week, an opportunity to rebound from Memorial Day food/drinks, and I did just that. Overall, bodyfat dropped significantly. The abdomen circumference dropped significantly. I also feel significantly better, my workouts feel better, and I have a strong intuition I’m on the right track.
Now that I’m shifting into muscle mass mode, I expect muscle site circumference metrics to expand. Knowing that I’ll recoup it in a week makes me less concerned about the drop in chest.
And that right there is all the attention those metrics deserve. Onward to more meaningful weeks!
Day 10 Recap
It felt great getting back on the exercise wagon and nailing the second strength workout of the week. The output:
- 2x: Kettlebell thrusters, kneeling single arm cable rows, turkish getups
- 3x: Trap bar deadlift, cable fly, dumbbell bench press
- 32 Strict chin-ups + 50 Bar push-ups, broken up into chunks
Steps checked in at 15,294. Miles at 7.32. Although now I know to mentally add 20%.
Sleep checked in at 7 hours and 13 minutes (16 minutes restless). I was primed for more, but I couldn’t tear myself away from NBA Finals Game 1. A conscious sacrifice.
Breakfast: Grass-fed greek yogurt, cacao nibs, chia seeds, coconut flakes, banana, and cinnamon. Black gold. As my hunger picks up (it’s hitting me prior to lunchtime now), I know I’ll have to bulk this up.
Pre-Workout: Raw Tea. As expected I ordered it officially on the heels of the samples in previous posts. I’m a fan.
Post-Workout: Grass-fed whole milk.
Late Lunch: Ground turkey leftovers (half dark, half white meat), wilted spinach, purple kimchi, fresh avocado, orange sweet potato.
Afternoon Snack: Rise Bar.
Dinner: Free-range chicken breast, 1/2 white sweet potato, 1/2 orange sweet potato, pickled carrots, and sauteed kale with lemon.
Seth Godin – author and entrepreneur – inspires me. Each and every day (literally) he’s there with a clearly delivered thought, usually an inspiring one.
Today his message is to focus.
It’s easier to focus, easier to execute, and easier to share my own thoughts when there are role models like Seth Godin doing the same.
In the words of his homepage, go make something happen!
Image Credit: Idea/Plan/Action – http://smallbiztrends.com