An Example – Steve’s Self-Assessment – Early 2016, Now & 2019 Goal
With complete honesty and transparency, I’ll share with you my before, current and future goal states, so you can get an idea of the change potential, and to see that I’ve operating on flawed practices for much of my life – some through ignorance and others through naivety.
It Started With An Office Fat Loss Challenge
My transformation started at the beginning of 2016. It started with me initiating a office fat loss challenge, after getting frustrated with my dealing body shape. You can see my before and after snaps in my Body Goals Intro blog.
It was being in a deliberate calorie restriction, cutting off some of my food addictions and committing to doing some general exercise 5-6 days a week which was my catalyst for massive change.
You’ll see from my scores of NUTRITION, REST & REPLENISH and EXERCISE, that as I got started on this journey, I had a bunch of bad habits that were taking away from my full potential. Every measure was in the poor category – scores of 3, 2 and 3 across Nutrition, Replenishment and Exercise respectively.
Read the category descriptions in PART Two – The Scorecard to get a sense of my behaviours and habits. No respect to nutrition. Had the worst relationship with sleep. And because of my chronic tiredness and all-in nature with a demanding roaming job, exercise was infrequent and random.
The good news story was that I lost over 25lbs, built up some good muscle structure and got relatively lean (about 8-9%). I felt great, and I loved the new me physically. This amped up my confidence, and set me off on a journey of growth…
My Saving Grace – My Mindset
My saving grace has always been my MINDSET.
Even though I was massively disrespecting my body, with the worst offence being sleep and adequate rest, I’ve run my life on sheer willpower, determination and adrenaline. Just push push push – against daily resistance. It’s been my mindset that allowed me to have a great career in the IT Security Industry, build up a respectable net worth and create financial freedom for my family.
My mindset has always been oriented around growth, but my darkest periods of life have been when I let go of this innate desire to grow, and started to coast. I assumed I had ‘arrived’, and re-investing in myself was no longer needed.
That’s where I was at the beginning of 2016. Still crushing it at work, but empty and frustrated. Hence I gave myself a score of 50 out of 70 – I had been higher, but in early 2016 my compassion for myself and others was waning, and a tendency to think negatively was on the rise.
The Scores On The Doors In Early 2016…
So, all in at the beginning of 2016 I scored a less-than-ideal 58 on the #BeYourBest scale. Not a great place for me, and I felt it in my mind, body and spirit.
The Path Towards A New Improved Me
Fast forward to today, August 2018 – I’m in an INCREDIBLE place. Absolutely still room for growth, which is expressed in my 2019 Goal, but the difference in me holistically is like night and day. Losing the weight, looking good and building up solid disciplined gym habits created the structure and interest to optimise.
I wanted to be more deliberate in advancing my physique – namely building a larger more muscular athletic physique. You can check out my goals and the metrics in My Body Goals Intro blog. Here’s a visual on my physique goal below.
I know this will read a little back to front, but my transformation started with Priority Three, EXERCISE, and rewound beautifully to Priority Zero, MINDSET. Check it out…
Priority Three – EXERCISE
To get these body aspirations, I needed to train with greater purpose, intelligence and difficulty. I researched, got a ton of personal training, developed deep relationships with people in the know, and began to understand how the human body responded to exercise.
You can check out the AdapNation #HyperWorkouts to see how I now train, in the pursuit of my 2019 physique goals.
Priority Two – REST & REPLENISHMENT
I also learnt that to build muscle as effectively as possible, I needed to double down on my recovery. At this stage, my sleep was still awful. The passion for sculpting my physique was the motivation to research and understand what great sleep and rest looks like, and all it’s benefits.
I read the book Sleep Smarter by Shawn Stevenson that changed my relationship with sleep FOREVER. I changed everything! The mattress, the covers, the room cooling, the pillow, my life schedule, and…. I committed to some habits that have made a huge difference. Check out the ‘Sleeping Hacks‘ Article which runs through the top things I do to get a great night sleep.
I went from 50-60% sleep quality and an average of 5-6h sleep a night, to 7-8h of sleep every night with a sleep quality rating of 85-95%! And trust me, what started off as an effort to improve gym/body performance has transformed me mentally and physiologically. It’s impacted MINDSET, NUTRITION and EXERCISE in ways I could not have imagined.
Priority One – NUTRITION
Again, to support optimal gym performance and muscle growth, I began to take nutrition seriously. I committed to getting over my fat gain hang ups by getting into a calorie surplus, but doing it the right way. But, just like the other Priorities, the more I passionately immersed myself into nutrition concepts, the more I got excited about moving way beyond body composition.
Body composition is still a primary goal, but it does NOT need to be at the expense for optimal wellness. You CAN have both. The journey over the last 18 months with food and it’s impact on my mind and body has been truly transformational, and so so exciting.
It’s not just me – my whole family now eat so incredibly well, and have a love for nutritious tasty food that helps us thrive. We eat as per the IIFYM+ Thrive eating approach, which has made managing body composition a sinch, but moreover has improved our health status from a disease, symptoms and subjective wellness measures. We all feel alive – we are thriving!
Priority Zero – MINDSET
And as you can imagine, this period of my life has been one of enormous knowledge and mindset growth. It had to be in order to have the motivation to acquire all these insights. But again, it’s much more than vocation improvement.
I am now energised with an inner electricity and spark every day. I’ve become a vivacious reader (check out my Reading List and Reading Recommendations), I started the AdapNation business, inclusive of the AdapNation Podcast, began practicing mindfulness daily, and have transformed as an active and all-in father to my beautiful kids.
Most surprisingly, there’s been an aspect of my personality and mindset that has transformed who I am, and is so exciting. My level of sincere compassion and desire to help others has blossomed. The potential to judge and hate on others has shrunk down to negligible levels. I’ve now found my purpose, my why, which is to help people be their best.
The Today #BeYourBest Score… drumroll
And all of this, from starting a fat loss challenge back in early 2016. Crazy!
And the #BeYourBest Self-Optimisation Score as a result has shot up significantly. I now sit at 87, up 29 points! And wow, I feel alive!
I’ve got my target set at getting to 92 by early 2019, which at my current course and speed feels completely achievable.
Growth seems to be occurring every day. It’s electrifying… 😊
Follow this and other topic areas in our longer-form Articles series as they unfold, as well as the AdapNation Food Diary for healthy meal inspiration and AdapNation’s #HyperWorkouts for free training plans. Comment if you have questions or ideas.