Permanent. Is it possible? We started this series by discussing some of the challenges other people may pose to your goal of living an exceptionally healthful lifestyle. You will face some resistance, but how you handle it can keep relationships intact. You may even be a positive force for change in others.
Part 2 moved into perfection vs. practicality—a tough balance to maintain at times. Making sure your expectations are appropriate and that you have flexibility are important. What would be worthwhile about a lifestyle that is so impractical and such a burden that you hate it?
There is real science at play, and if you learn it once and for all, you will be in control of your progress and your ability to make “permanent” a reality.
I hope that both of those articles are helping you to relax a bit and enjoy the benefits of being lean. Maintaining the physique you want shouldn’t involve a life of nagging pressure. At some point, however, the work has to be done. Sometimes the biggest obstacle won’t be someone else or deciding what foods to include on a daily menu. You may be your own worst enemy. I have to admit that I almost titled this final segment, "Suck It Up—No One Wants to Hear You Whine." Its purpose is to gauge how badly you want it.
It may be helpful to start by brainstorming a list of all the barriers to maintaining the physique you want. Consider that a full 95 to 98 percent of people who lose weight gain it back within two years. If it was an easy endeavor, that wouldn’t be the case. You have a head start—you’re seeking information to improve, and chances are you’ve already tasted victory. You are extreme, and you want extreme results, yet research proves that it’s far easier to get there than to stay there. So let’s make that list of barriers:
Okay, I just couldn’t think of a good rhyme for the last one, and I’d just watched Frank Caliendo do his George W. Bush skit. But that’s it—only three things to consider. I could list subpoints and expand for pages, but let’s make it easy.
It seems we’re very good at pointing to some diet gimmicks as fads; we throw anything we think is bunk into that pile. Ironically, though, if it’s something that intrigues us, we’re often quick to think, Hey, this may be the next wave of science! I see incredibly smart people fall into that trap. They are Internet hounds, afraid they might miss a key piece of life-altering information and the world will pass them by.
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