Where does one find true inspiration and motivation? There are many stories. Some people head to the hills, some talk to other people who are already highly motivated, some read inspiring books and articles, or some fall and get inspired.
But here is a story of a man who found his inspiration in the most commonest of places which all of us can relate to.
Few months back, I bumped into a gentleman at my gym. A sort of a person who usually keeps to himself. Being a regular at my gym I had observed that he used to walk in to the gym, change his shoes, put on his earplugs and without talking or smiling to anyone just get into his routine.
On the face of it, there was nothing about him that would make anyone stop and talk to him as well. Not that he had any arrogance about himself but hardly anyone in the gym ever knew his name or where he came from. And that’s the way it was for him and for everyone else around him.
But this time, I decided to walk up to him and offered him a handshake. I wonder why I handn’t done it earlier. May it was the airplane syndrome. He reached out and shook my hand, gave a smile and removed his earplugs.
Having introduced myself, I asked him, why do I keep seeing him everytime I come to the gym, be it in the morning or evening, he is always there.! This does not mean that I was in the gym in the mornings and evenings both. I really wouldn’t be able do it twice in a day.
The point was, if I was in the gym in the mornings, he used to be there. And I went to the gym in the evenings or nights, he would be there. Its like he was omnipresent.
In response to my question, he reached out for his wallet and showed me a picture of his when he was 115 Kgs & then a recent one when he hit 85 Kgs. That was a massive drop. I looked at him, this time did a full body scan on him (I guess he was a little embarrased with that) and looked at the picture again.
These were 2 different people. It can’t be possibly him. Had to be a double, or a much leaner, fitter twin.
Having embarrassed myself and him as well for the scan, my next question was, in how much time was he able to achieve this. He said with a smile – 90 days. It would be an understatement if I said, I was in shock. “30 kgs drop in 3 months“, I repeated these words in my mind. That’s mighty impressive.
His Focus. Am Hungry For More
And now am eager to know more, so my next obvious question was, how did he manage to do it?
And before he could reply, I was already building up an image in my mind of a person who would wear a fitness device or a tracker, fancy gym shoes, even fancier bottle of water. I mean, aren’t these the standard protocol of the fitness community. These three things collectively can help to spot a fitness enthusiast from miles away. Its a picture that everyone has so got used to it that if you are not wearing some high-end shoes it means you are not serious enough player.
So I did another scan, this time I kept it very subtle. I was getting good at it by now. A full scan revealed that neither he was wearing any obnoxiously expensive running shoes (which costs a month’s income these days for an average person) nor any fitness device. He just a had a pair of simple wired headphones.
Ok, so I thought to myself. Surely not a serious player. I mean, no Nike Shoes, No Adidas T-shirt. (I should pause here and clarify that I have nothing against the brands or their messaging in driving the fitness community to challenge themselves )
He smiled again. His reply stumped me.
- Walking & Running on the Treadmill
- Diet — 2 eggs in the morning, a normal lunch, & only fruits for dinner (no keto diets)
Really, that’s it? I expected to have this conversation last for at least 10 mins. I mean, everyone will have a big list of things that they do to lose weight. It’s never simple. The agony, the pain, the sacrifices, the shame, all the hard work, etc is what one would normally hear in response to that question. I must admit, I was a little disappointed. Was really looking forward to an enlightening and inspiring story with all the bells and whistles.
And my apologies to you – the reader, for not providing a more thrilling and high energy story of how a person lost 30 Kgs in 90 days. I know you expected more, just like me.
But here is the thing, what may sound disappointing to us because we didn’t get to hear what we wanted to hear, was actually a massive achievement for this person. He had come a long way and without indulging in any of the elements that the fitness community is famous for.
He didn’t hire a trainer, did not google anything or watched any videos on weight loss, or went crazy with his diet. He used common sense and executed a very simple plan –
Walk, Run More. Eat Less.
I Don’t Give Up. Neither Does He
My final question to him. This time I promised to myself that I will not do a scan.
I asked him what was his motivation to lose weight, and how did he get inspired to take up this challenge. I mean, everyone has a great story, right? I was now really expecting something really inspiring. All the previous questions had yielded answers which was short to ultra short.
With that question now thrown, I waited for a story. To my utter surprise again his response floored me — “He got tired of going around shops looking for XXL T-shirts for himself and had to spend hours looking for his size. This frustrated him. It was a sheer waste of time, so he decided that instead of wasting his time looking for T-shirts that match his size, he was going to spend the same time losing weight”.
As simple as that. And by far this was his longest reply.
Excited to hear such a “long” reply, I was tempted to ask one more final question, what’s your next target.
He replies with a smile – To hit 75 kgs in another month..
Am dead sure he is going to do it. Why? Because he is Keeping It Simple Silly
Today we are drowning in a sea of fitness gadgets and wearable devices that apparently monitors every single step and breath you take. The question that we need to ask ourselves is — whether we need all that data?
And even if you receive that data — how are you going to use it and to what end?
And in our desire to look smart, sound intelligent, and have a wardrobe full of fitness clothes of all kinds of brands, we miss the main objective of hitting the target.
We indulge in everything else – Keto diets, paying hefty amounts for fitness programs, posing for selfies, clicking videos of your workout, engaging personal trainers, watching fitness videos, endlessly talk about about how hard you are trying, etc, etc but we never really keep it simple and boring.
Boring is tough. But boring sometimes brings results. Only if you KISS