There is no ‘battle’ against the bulge, for most of us, this is a full on war!
I was trying to learn to play chess a little while ago. I know how to play chess in general, it is just that I am not great at it. I have never learned any strategies, opening moves, any of that. I just go with my gut. So when I was trying to learn how to play I picked up a book called Chess Strategy. I learned something right away. There is a difference between a strategy and a tactic (at least in terms of chess).
If I remember correctly, a strategy is a plan, a long term movement scheme and a tactic is more of a short term, 3 or 4 move, method to move your strategy forward. I think it is something like that. Now you are getting the impression of how bad I am at chess. To be good at chess though, the thing is, you have to realize that there are short term tactics and long term strategies. This is because chess is a long fight and has a beginning, a middle and an end. So does weightloss.
Why I mention this is right now I am beginning a new campaign in the 2010 season of my war to be fit (I prefer to view it as a war to win fitness rather than a war against weight gain). It really feels like I am beginning a new campaign. To keep things fresh and exciting I have some new goals, new routines, new strategies. Things were quiet over the holidays, but now I am in full stride. I have some new tactics as part of a strategy. Last years strategy was to build my endurance slowly and steadily over the year. I had a bunch of tactics to achieve this, including some events I was training for, some friends I trained with, some classes I signed up in, some eating routines, etc. This year I am leaning towards speed and intervals. I am considering dropping back down to sprint distance triathlons and improving my times. I am going to get my best mile time, my best 5k time and my best 10k time. I am going to increase my power and take the 100 push up challenge, do as many pull ups as I can and sit ups. A lot of old school stuff. I have a training plan. It have finished my third year of running and now I have a large enough base to begin intervals.
The battle is all over except the “shouting” when one knows what is wanted and has made up his mind to get it, whatever the price may be. –Napoleon Hill
You too have to view your weight issues as a war, not a battle. A war isn’t fought and won in a day, a month or a year. A war isn’t won with some short surge. A war is won through long hard dedicated work, aligned in the right direction. A war is won by following a strategy, measuring the success, analyzing your position and modifying your strategy. A war is won by committing to a battle strategy for a reasonable and foreseeable part of your future and following the successful tactics that drive your strategy forward.
Sometimes by losing a battle you find a new way to win the war. –Donald Trump
There is another reason why seeing this as a war rather than a battle makes sense. When you try some new diet or exercise or health strategy, you don’t always find what is going to work for you. Sometimes you don’t succeed. If this was all you had, if this was your whole weightloss strategy, you would be done. But instead, if you view it as a battle and you learn some lessons from this battle, then you are better armed to fight your next battle and hopefully win the war.
So commit to the war, develop a strategy and design a battle plan.
I firmly believe that any man’s finest hour, the greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle – victorious. –Vince Lombardi
I hope to see you on the field of battle shortly. It is only a month until the Climb the Wall stair climb, that could be your battlefield if you live in Vancouver! I will write more about that in a future post. In the meantime, think about changing your focus from a diet to a fitness plan. Remember, if you don’t have a plan ‘B’, you don’t have a plan.