I wrote this post for my friends and ‘family’ at the Guernsey Fitness Camp but the messages are so important, I wanted to share it with everyone.
I hope you find it a source of inspiration, information and the slap around the face that we all need at times!
I have finally returned from a conference in LA learning about speaking/presenting and then hosting a seminar for 90 trainers in Birmingham.
Apologies for my absence and relative radio silence.
Things have changed for me a lot recently and I have come to the realisation that both my path in life, and what I believe you as friends of Storm Force Fitness need, are different to what we all think they are!
Fear not this is good!
Excuse what may appear as ramblings, but this is who I am, what I see, and what I believe will help us all.
That’s all I can offer. I hope you see it the same.
Since I turned 21, I have seen myself as a ‘fitness trainer’ or whatever similar label you want to use.
This label is of course, is self-created and what I believed was right.
And don’t get me wrong, I still reckon I’m quite good at it :-).
But eventually we tire of being who other people want us to be unless we are totally comfortable with and happy to be that person.
I personally feel I can offer a lot more on top and have committed to making it happen no matter what it costs financially – I don’t care if my coffin is wooden or gold plated.
Bury me in cardboard box if you like – I’m more concerned with the legacy and beliefs I leave behind and who is standing there as my coffin is brought in.
Right now you may label yourself (or let someone else label you) as as accountant, a receptionist, a lawyer or whatever is your ‘job’.
However, recently I’ve been on an extensive journey to find my real purpose having realised that no matter how many amazing people like you that I have around me, something is missing.
Well it’s not missing. Nothing is ‘not here’. We just can’t see it.
Like how you may have thought there was no exercise plan that worked for you.
Then you found the GFC.
Everything and everyone you need is already on this planet, the question is whether you SEE IT.
Now I know what I’ve had my eyes closed to.
My purpose is to guide people in the same way I was guided, to lift themselves out of the hole of relative loneliness, lack of confidence and feeling like the body they walk around in isn’t good enough.
That’s how I spent my childhood.
Waiting for the phone to ring in case it was someone wanting me to go to a party or play football.
Wondering how I would EVER get a girl to like me.
Wondering why I had been blessed with the body of an anorexic grasshopper.
Yeah, you think your life sucks because you’re half a stone overweight?
When you’ve been laughed out of Beau Sejour because of how you look, things like THAT stay with you for life.
Fat is EEEEEASY to get rid of.
My search for purpose is why I’m spending time in the US – I’ve found the people I need for where I want to take things in order to help more people in specific ways.
It costs a lot of money and I could be spending that time driving myself into the ground with personal training and working 0600-2100 to fill my bank account but no-one ever said on their death bed “I wish I had worked more”.
I have this burning desire to show people that life is so, so different if you change your perspectives on a few things and realise that there is no reality, just what you perceive based on experiences and mental programming as you’ve grown up.
Here’s what I know now:
I know that an apple is better for me than a Mars bar.
I know that water is better for me than beer.
I know that I should eat lots of vegetables.
I know that I shouldn’t eat much sugar if at all.
I know I should eat lean protein.
I know I should exercise with intensity and direction, often and with enjoyment at the results.
This makes you healthy and lean.
Do I really know any more than you?
The difference is not always in the knowing or in the HOWS, but in knowing what the WHYS are.
You know this stuff. You knew it before you heard of me.
So what’s missing is more that you don’t know your true purpose or why a ‘better body’ will change things and give you that sense of inner peace that eludes most people during their life.
You know something is not right in your life which is why you feel unhappy and can’t find peace in certain areas of your life.
Immediately we blame ourselves and as we see ourselves as just that person in the mirror, that is what gets labelled as the problem and we chase down anything that promises a fast change to what we see in mirror.
We also blame it on lack of money.
But in a study into happiness, it was found that Mexico and some parts of Africa had the highest self-rating of happiness.
When they delved deeper, 98% said it was because they felt belonging.
This is powerful for you AND me.
We need to stop chasing money and temporary highs and find places, people and activities which make us feel like we belong.
The other stuff doesn’t matter.
Feel like you belong amongst people on a night out? You won’t need to drink so much.
Feel like you belong in a fitness class? You’ll want to push harder and not hide at the back. You’ll try harder options and if it doesn’t work out, not feel ashamed. You tried.
Feel like you have the security you need and friends who will pull you up when you’re down? What do you need more and more money and a big house for?
My friend Brian Grasso, has instilled a greater sense of peace in me now.
This is us after he spoke like no-one I’ve heard before at my seminar in Birmingham.
He greets me saying “Sawubona”.
It is an African greeting translated as “I see you”.
In other words, I actually see you, I’m paying attention to you and I see beyond the physical form that I just rushed past with a fleeting “Alright?”
His partner Carrie asked if she had to cover her tattoos whilst speaking at my seminar at the weekend.
To me, saying “Yes” would be the opposite of this powerful greeting and would stop people seeing Carrie for who she is and what she stands for.
Next time you greet someone, hold their handshake for just 3 seconds longer and look them in the eyes. You’ll get a much better answer to your question.
The truth is we rarely even care if the other person is ‘alright’ and we don’t even hear the answer, let alone pay attention to how they look.
We just want someone else to say “How are you?” so we feel like we belong.
It’s why we check for text messages and emails every 2 minutes.
It’s why we dress up to go out so we stand out and have people make a comment about it so we feel noticed.
It’s why we sign up for exercise classes with no real clue of what we want out of it.
We want to pass the responsibility for our feeling good to someone else.
“If I don’t feel good after, it’s not my fault, it’s the trainers.”
Don’t get me wrong, I’m delighted you have joined the GFC as it gives me the chance to tell you these things.
And yes, it’s hard to get your head around.
I still struggle like everyone else.
However I have realised I do what I do because I:
1) Want a community around me, in which I feel I belong.
2) Want to have a body that stands out, to give me the attention I didn’t have between 11-16 at school before I met my true friends who I still hang out with now.
3) Want to stop others going through the same.
So the key to all this, and I’ll develop it further soon, is to really take a long, cold, hard look at why you want to get fit and how it’s going to make your life better.
Look beyond ‘getting in that black dress/those beach shorts”
That’s not what you care about. There’s more beyond.
I used to think it was about targeting some emotional goal like “having more confidence so I can get promotions” or “feeling like I can go up to girls in a bar”.
Now I see beyond.
Now when I see people I ask myself how happy they look, how they hold themselves and whether or not their is a fire burning inside or just a smouldering cinder which “keeps them going”.
If there is no fire burning, if they are not thinking freely, we can’t expect the results from fitness that we THINK we want…
…the fat loss, the muscle, the strength…whatever you currently tell yourself you crave.
You want more and I truly hope I can help you find it.
A great body is certainly the vehicle for achieving many, many things.
You need energy, strength and health to make the most of your time on this planet.
But first, know the why.
Don’t know where to start?
The gut is directly linked to the brain along a nerve (in the womb the brain and intestines begin attached then move apart).
It’s why we get butterflies.
It’s why we feel like we’re going to sh*t ourselves when nervous.
It’s what we loosely term ‘gut instinct’.
Right now, you may be feeling a welling up about something you have always wanted to do.
– Speaking to others
– Community work
– International charity work
Pay attention to your gut.
First clear it out with good nutrition.
Then listen to it more.
It may well show you the path.
You’re going to die. In case you didn’t know.
I don’t know what happens after – make your own mind up.
Right now, you’re in that body you see, and once you start using it for GOOD things and EXHILIRATING things, all the other stuff you worry about daily becomes so easy, it just becomes part of a process.
Do you really want to drag your ass from one day to the next or do you want the strength, energy and power to do what you want to do before someone, whoever it is, turns the lights out?
And if you want some inspiration and words of wisdom from someone in a much worse state than you, watch my interview with Biggest Loser Winner, Kevin McLernon below.