In the 70’s, the Bulgarian Olympic Weightlifting team was one of the most dominant sporting forces on the planet.
They racked up medal counts that would make even the most hardened communist dictator blush.
(Or *turn red*, get it? Uh? Uh? Ah whatever…)
In the totalitarian machinery of the former Eastern Bloc – and under massive investment by the state – science ruled the day.
After carefully selecting and segmenting their athletes into their respective sports, scientists studied all aspects of the participants training, diet, and supplementation, with the goal of gleaning every drop of their full potential.
They were extremely intentional in testing anything they could think of…
This even extended to flooding the weight room with scantily clad Bulgarian hotties, to see how it would affect the male lifters.
The men lifted heavier weights, and trained harder under the ladies’ motivating influence.
The point is, progress is rarely achieved in any field – or in life – without a great deal of intention.
Unless you’re intentional about every segment of your day, you’ll fail to overcome the unconscious habits that are hardwired into your brain (and may not be supporting your success).
Here are a few things you can be intentional about…
*Packing your belongings with snacks and meals for the day, based on your schedule
*What menu items you’ll order at your lunch meeting
*How you want to feel throughout your workday (e.g. Decide “I’m going to feel great today…” Hey, don’t knock it ‘til you’s tried it!)
*How you’re going to nurture your own wellbeing (e.g. workout, read a book, have coffee with a friend, get a massage or spa treatment)
*Who you plan to be in your interactions with everyone you meet (What kindness can you do? What compliment can give?)
*What you’re going to do to break up the routine
That last one is a winner.
Take a different route home, buy your coffee at another coffee shop, talk to a stranger, wake up at an earlier or later time…Anything that heightens your awareness in the moment and breaks the spell of the robot-like repetition that characterizes most daily regimens.
(Brain science corner: new experiences physically reshape your brain – it’s called neuroplasticity. Continually repeated situations create deep grooves in your mind and trigger the same combinations of neurons to fire together, leading to the same predictable behavioral responses. When you’re in the habit of introducing new stuff, it can be easier to form new associations and increase your ability to steer yourself to desirable action.)
When you give up the hypnosis of habit, you gain the power to choose freely in the present, as opposed to surreptitiously living out your past subconscious programming.
Only then are you truly in the driver’s seat – in your fitness program, and in life.
Don’t fight me on this.
You know I’m right…
Be more intentional about being intentional.
And bring on the Bulgarian gym bunnies…
P.S. Come see me present my latest talk, ‘LEAN FOR LIFE: How To Achieve & MAINTAIN Your Healthiest & Best Body’, next Tuesday, March 15th
in Liberty Village.