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The Good Dumbbells

ParkDistricGymBlakelyFITThe other day, I overheard another trainer’s client lament “Ah, these aren’t the good dumbbells.” I smiled a little and continued training. This person preferred the newer gym dumbbells – shiny handles and rubberized heads, a strong contrast to the worn and weathered metal variety.
I smiled because, how much more irrelevant could appearance be than with dumbbells? What is a dumbbell’s job? Be a consistent external load, must have handle. Appearance is irrelevant. Shiny and rubberized are not going to make your biceps any stronger, form any better or feet any safer than the older, uglier weight in the corner.

Above is a photo of where I have been working out lately – a Chicago park district gym across the hallway from where my daughter takes a tumbling class. Yes, Chicago Reader’s 2012 Best Personal Trainer works out at a $17 per month 1,000 square foot public gym.  It is very simple and limited in it’s equipment but it doesn’t matter. It fits my schedule and my needs. I get in a quick workout while my daughter enjoys a class 100 feet away. Any one of you could get in a great workout at a gym like this. Sometimes it’s important to resist being charmed by the new and shiny. The old dumbbells in the corner will work just as well.

Secret to Success

Being healthier will present challenges. It may force you to think about and analyze experiences and decisions easier ignored. You must tackle the tough stuff in order to be successful. It is simple, but not easy:

“Successful people do the things that unsuccessful people are unwilling to do.”

360 Degree Leader by John C. Maxwell

Mind Management

Let me share a little secret with you, “this game is 90% mental.” As someone privy to women’s internal struggles to be fit, I have learned that managing our thoughts is vital in the being healthy fight. How you spin your progress, history and future can be instrumental to your success.

Where are you in your mental management?

  • Do you see opportunity or denial?
  • Do you refocus your attention after a set back?
  • Do you celebrate and reward your successes?
  • Do you have any “tricks” to move around a poor attitude?
  • Have you practiced mantras or positive maxims?
  • Are you aware of your self talk?
  • Do you believe you can succeed?

Being skilled at managing our thoughts fuels our progress. And like any skill, each of these can easily be improved with practice. Manage your thoughts so they are fair, helpful and encouraging. Take a little time to hone a positive spin on your thoughts for healthy living. It is well worth the investment.