All It Takes Is A Goal

ATG 17: 3 shame-free soundtracks that will help you crush your health goals.

May 03, 2021 Jon Acuff Season 1 Episode 17
All It Takes Is A Goal
ATG 17: 3 shame-free soundtracks that will help you crush your health goals.
Chapters
All It Takes Is A Goal
ATG 17: 3 shame-free soundtracks that will help you crush your health goals.
May 03, 2021 Season 1 Episode 17
Jon Acuff

Health and fitness goals are at the top of the list of difficult things to accomplish.

It's not that losing weight, staying in shape, or shaving a few minutes off your mile time are difficult because there's a lack of information about how to do those things. They're difficult because of the abundance of shame that often creeps in when you start pursuing health-related goals. In this episode, I'll give you the 3 shame-free soundtracks that will help you accomplish all your difficult health goals and keep you moving forward until you've reached the finish line.

Book mentioned in this episode:
I Hate Running and You Can Too by Brendan Leonard

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Show Notes Transcript

Health and fitness goals are at the top of the list of difficult things to accomplish.

It's not that losing weight, staying in shape, or shaving a few minutes off your mile time are difficult because there's a lack of information about how to do those things. They're difficult because of the abundance of shame that often creeps in when you start pursuing health-related goals. In this episode, I'll give you the 3 shame-free soundtracks that will help you accomplish all your difficult health goals and keep you moving forward until you've reached the finish line.

Book mentioned in this episode:
I Hate Running and You Can Too by Brendan Leonard

Follow Jon on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook.

Order Soundtracks, Jon's newest book available wherever you find quality books!

Jon Acuff:

Hey everyone, and welcome to the All it takes is a goal podcast the best place in the entire world, including all of Canada to learn how to build new thoughts, new actions and new results. I'm your host, Jon Acuff, and today I'm going to teach you three ways to make health goals easier. But first, today's episode is sponsored by Medi-Share. Have you guys ever had buyer's remorse? You know that feeling of intense regret because the thing you thought you just had to have was only something used once or twice? For me it was the time I bought a really expensive road bike because I thought I was going to get into cycling. I proceeded to hang it on the wall in my garage and feel ashamed for six months. Well, I know some of you are experiencing buyer's remorse right now for something much more frustrating. You know what I'm talking about. It's the healthcare you rushed to get during open enrollment last December. Well, I have some good news for you. You've probably heard me talking about our main sponsor for this podcast, Medi-Share. And these guys have the answer to healthcare buyer's remorse. Check this out, members of Medi-Share save up to 50% or more per month on their health care costs. They say the typical family saves up to $500 per month. And here's the best part, you can become a member at any time. So that means it isn't too late to ditch your buyer's remorse and switch to a more affordable health care that will save you money and help you sleep better at night. If this is your first time you're hearing about Medi-Share, it is the best alternative to health insurance that allows you to share the burden of medical bills, offers access to 900,000 plus health care providers, and has a proven 25 year track record. Plus in addition to saving hundreds per month, as a member of Medi-Share, you will also have access to free telehealth and free telecounseling. You won't find that with any traditional health insurance provider. Guys, it only takes two minutes to see how much you could save. Go investigate that for yourself and your family at Medi-Share.com/Jon. That's Medi-Share.com/Jon. Remember Jon doesn't have an H in it. So it's a M-E-D-I, that's Medi, share, S-H-A-R-E dot com slash J-O-N. Alright. So today we're going to talk about health goals. Specifically three new soundtracks that you can use to make achieving your health goals easier. What do I mean by soundtrack? Well, I spent the last few years researching and writing a book about overthinking. It's called soundtracks and it came out a few weeks ago. A soundtrack is my word for a repetitive thought, a thought you hear over and over again in your head. If the soundtracks you listen to are positive, your thoughts can be your best friend, propelling you on new adventures with creativity and hope. If, though, your day is spent overthinking broken soundtracks, your thoughts can be your worst foe, holding you back from ever taking action on all the things that you want in life. Now, these soundtracks I'm going to give you today can really be applied to any type of goal. If you don't have a health goal right now you can easily adapt them to a financial goal or a spiritual goal or relationship goal. But occasionally on this podcast, I'm going to focus on a specific type of goal, like the episode where I taught you what to say to people who asked you to work for free. Have you listened to that one yet? Because the three words that I teach you will change your life. If you have a side hustle, that episode will change your life. And that episode was all about side hustle goals. So I'm going to mix it up because otherwise I think, I think we'll both get bored. So let's jump right into soundtrack number one. It's only four words. Are you ready? Here they are. "I'll feel awesome after." There comes a moment in every health goal. That just sucks. This is true of every type of goal, but especially true of health goals. When I used to work out with a trainer, because clearly I did, I mean if you've seen old photos of me on the internet, you're like "I dunno. He could be juicing. Jon Acuff is massive." But when I used to work out with a trainer, my trick was to always ask as many questions about the exercise as I could to try to distract him and catch my breath. "Whew, so you uh, you call this a medicine ball? Is that Did I pronounce that correctly? What is the history of the medicine ball? Do you know its origin story? Is that something the Greeks invented? Have you ever been to Athens? You know, Yanni recorded Live at the Acropolis there. Amazing album. I don't want to say life changing, but I would say life changing for that album." But my trainer never fell for it. You're going to have some of those moments, and what's going to happen is that you'll lose track of time. You'll start to hear a broken soundtrack that says something like "this will never end. This mile will never end. This Peloton class will never end. This is going to be forever." That's how we feel. And the more time we listen to that soundtrack, the easier it is to want to give up. In that moment, the suck moment if you will, I want you to say a new soundtrack. I want you to say those four words. "I'll feel awesome after!" I started using this soundtrack when I realized that jogging outside in January sucks. Some people say it's great because you don't get hot and with the right gear you barely notice the cold. Like people say that. They say "there's no such thing as bad weather, just bad gear." Those people are crazy. I hate running in the winter. But I also don't love treadmills, so I'm a bit stuck. Also, one day, I realized that I would always be able to come up with an excuse not to run. In the summer, whew, it's too hot to run. I live in the south. I live outside of Nashville. It's too hot to run. In the fall, it's too dark to run. So moody. Ugh, it's like a Counting Crows song out there. Just dark. I could get hit by a teenager in a car. In the winter, it's too cold to run. So cold! In the spring, it's too rainy to run. In his new book. I Hate Running and You Can Too, which is such a good title, Brendan Leonard draws a calendar of the entire year and color codes each day. There are categories like Too Hot, Too Windy, Too Cold, Too Cold and Too Snowy, and finally Perfect. He labels that there are only four perfect running days in the entire year. It's a hilarious, really helpful book, and I'm going to try to get him to come on the podcast. We'll link the book in the show notes. Again, the title is I Hate Running and You Can Too. It's easy to find excuses, isn't it? Sometimes I feel like my brain saves its greatest creativity for when I need to come up with a new excuse. I am the Picasso of excuses. It's not a unique problem, though. When it comes to goals, especially health goals. Most of it comes down to a simple question. Can you make yourself do something you don't want to do sometimes? Let me repeat that because I tend to talk very quickly. When I'm excited. I'm always excited when I'm recording this podcast. I think every goal hinges on that question, can you make yourself do something you don't want to do sometimes? I added the word "sometimes" because I think there will be other times when you do want to do the activity. I love running some days. I feel fast and free and happy. Other days though, it just sucks. There are 1000 possible methods and entire books have been written about that question. But I'll give you my simple approach. I ignore the start, and I imagine the finish. The way I lock that in is with the soundtrack. "I'll feel awesome after." I try my best not to think about the first 90 seconds of the job. I try not to think about leaving my warm house or the hassle of finding all my stuff to bundle up or that initial blast of cold air that just hits me. The beginning is the worst. And if I dwell on it, I'll never do it. I just won't. The opposite is true for the finish. I obsess about how good I will feel when it's done. I imagine finally turning the last corner and running down the hill to my house. I imagine watching my running app hit five miles and how happy I'll be to hit the Finish button. I use Strava to track my miles. That's the app I like the most. I think about the shower after and the overwhelming satisfaction when I get to cross off that run on my to do list. I'll feel awesome after. this is true, by the way, of any type of goal. When I'm writing, I imagine holding the book in my hand. Like I imagine that moment. I imagined seeing the actual book on a bookshelf someday where I walk into a bookstore. I think about that "after." When I'm working on a speech, I imagine stepping off stage and the event planner saying "That was exactly what our people needed to hear." I think about the moment when I drive away from the airport. Like where I've gone, I've done a speech at a company and I've come home and I finished a successful event. I think about that after. I'm in the middle, right now as we speak, I'm in the middle of creating a series of keynotes based on my new book. It's hundreds of slides tens of 1000s of words, weeks of practice, and then I'm going to hone it all down to a 30 minute version, a 45 minute version, a 90 minute version, and a three hour version based on what the companies I serve need. It's a ton of work, but I know I'll feel awesome after. When I'm launching a product, I think about all the fun posts on Instagram I'll get to see from people who it helps. Did you see the post about Sharon that I shared on Instagram? If that story didn't make you cry, you sir, are dead inside. That story was amazing. I dream in Technicolor about the finish, and I keep the start in black and white. In the middle of the run, when I want to give up, I remember, I've got the finish to look forward to. If you're going to go to the gym or prepare your meals for the week ahead or maybe try to get more sleep, maybe that's your goal. You'll be tempted to think about the beginning. Don't. Ignore it. Don't give it a second thought. Save all that imagination for the end. Even if it sucks to run in January, and it does, but I'm going to do it anyway because that's the only way that I get to enjoy the finish. The second soundtrack that will make your health goals easier is "ugly and slow is awesome." Yeah, that's right. The first two soundtracks have the word "awesome" in it, what can I say? I'm a fan. I realize that I say the word "awesome" and "dude" a lot. Like I say those two words, a generous amount of times I came up with this particular soundtrack, "Ugly and slow is awesome," on the side of a mountain in Utah, as I desperately tried to not fall off a cliff. Allow me to explain. My buddy, Randy is a lot better at skiing than I am. I mean, a lot. And this became painfully obvious when he jumped off a ledge into the woods for a black diamond run at Alta in Salt Lake City. There was a foot of new powder, and at some points, the snow was knee deep. I was struggling to keep up. I realized that for every 10 turns he was making, I was making one. Like I could watch him from my perch, like my death perch, looking down, and I could see him going [mimicks quick whooshing noises for skiing]. He was making 10 turns and I was like, [mimicks slow, creaking sound] and then I'd slowly turn, [mimicks slow, creaky sound] like, it was not fast. It was so slow. I was struggling to keep up. I really was. And if getting better at skiing was my current health goal, I was having a really hard time with it. In moments like that, I tend to feel ashamed. I tend to think "I should be better. The result should be coming faster." That's the broken soundtrack of expectations. Other people there are doing better than me. I should give up because this is going just like every other attempt went. I get this flood of negative thoughts, and I have a hard time continuing. Have you ever felt that way about a goal you're working on? It's not a lack of information, by the way, that makes it hard to lose weight or stay in shape. We have 10,000 diet books, like we have so many diet books, so many approaches, the lack of information is not the problem. The abundance of shame usually is. For the first time, while I was stuck in the woods looking down at cliff-like conditions and 20 feet of visibility in a near blizzard, I thought of something. I thought "You know, I can ski anything. It just might be ugly, and slow." My form wouldn't be great. No one would take a picture of me shooting a plume of snow into the air as I made an expert turn. I wasn't going to be doing any jumps that inspired like a Kenny Loggins soundtrack. There would be no Highway to the Danger Zone moment. This would not look like a scene from Aspen Extreme, or as you might know it from the 90s, Top Gun for the slopes. Skiing is the easy part. Such a wonderful movie. If you haven't seen that movie, it is delightful. My descent would be ugly and slow, but I would do it. And then the next time, it would be a little less ugly and a little faster. Not much. maybe seconds faster, maybe an inch less ugly, I'm not sure what metric we're currently using to measure ugly, I think it might be a stick. But when we drove away from the mountain that day, I felt awesome. Not because I skied perfectly. But because I skied, I got out on the mountain, and I tried my best. Most importantly, I beat back the shame that usually keeps me from sticking with my health and fitness goals. If you're an elite Olympic-level athlete make maybe this sounds silly to you. But there's a chance you're not. More than likely you're like me, someone who wants to lose a few pounds or start running a few miles and get back on your bike. You're an amateur and your progress might be slow and ugly. But that's okay. Because slow and ugly is awesome. The third soundtrack that I use when it comes to my health goals sounds a little weird. It does. I know it does, but it works. Here it is. "Find the first plate." This is a soundtrack that I first noticed in our kitchen. If a single dirty plate gets placed in our sink at home, we've taken the first step to an out of control sink. If my kids see one plate in there, they assume the dishwasher is full of clean dishes and they start stacking everything in the sink plate by plate by plate. They know they're supposed to check if the dishwasher is full of clean dishes. I mean, in a perfect world, they would do that right? They'd check and then they'd put all the dishes away if they're clean and then maybe they'd sing a song to us, like a song on the stairs. That would be amazing. The sink is only two feet from the dishwasher. You don't have to travel to like the west wing of the house. We don't have a west wing. But the first plate in the sink is the signal to them that it's okay to pile stuff in the sink. And so they do. Which means in a matter of hours as snacks are eaten and meals are consumed, the sink will be overflowing with dirty dishes. All it takes is one plate. Life is like that sometimes. Maybe your first plate in your health sink is placing your running shoes in the garage instead of by your bed for a morning run. You just put them in the garage. You're just got to tuck them there out of sight out of mind and then it gets harder to actually run. Maybe your first plate is buying the bigger ice cream container instead of the smaller one you usually buy. It's on sale, I mean, why not? And all of a sudden, you have a tub with like a handle, like it came with like a Yeti handle for you to lift up. Maybe your first plate is watching the Netflix show, which makes you stay up later than you intended, which makes you sleep in, which makes you miss the spin class you wanted to go to before work. Maybe your first plate is walking into the kitchen during work hours. I found myself snacking more than I ever have during the pandemic. Part of the reason was that I was home more and I had instant access to my entire fridge. I don't care how baller your break room was at work, if you worked in an office, you never brought your whole fridge with you. You don't have instant access to every food item from your home when you work in an office. I mean, when I worked at the Home Depot corporate center, down in Atlanta, I went into the break room, maybe twice a day, maybe three times a day. You know, like once in the morning for coffee, once at lunch, maybe once in the afternoon for coffee, but I go into my kitchen probably a dozen times a day. And every time I do my brain is like "Oh hey, whoa, we're here for a snack, right? I mean, that's what we do right?" Here's the thing, get something healthy, and then eat so much of it, that it's no longer healthy, like almonds. That's a superfood. You can eat some almonds. Eat some almonds that's a superfood right up until the moment that you eat 800 of them. Let's do it. If I snacked in offices, as much as I did at my house, people would call me Snackin' Jon. That would be my nickname instead of what people currently call me, which is Tall Jon. A lot of people call me and they're like, "Oh, there's that Tall Jon, super tall." Walking into the kitchen a dozen times a day is a first plate for me. There's always a first plate, find out what it is, and then do your best to keep it out of the sink. Find the first plate. Those are the three soundtracks that will make your health goals easier. Number one, "I'll feel awesome after." Number two, "Ugly and slow is awesome." And number three, "Find the first plate." Thank you so much for listening today. If you want to learn more about creating new soundtracks and how to turn your overthinking from a super problem into a superpower, grab a copy of my new book Soundtracks. We'll link it in the show notes. And thank you for following this podcast. And if you'd like anything today, if there's anything today, if you're like, "Okay, I see what you did there. I'm a fan. Aspen Extreme reference? Well done, sir. Well done. I thought most people had never seen that movie. And you just referenced that and Kenny Loggins in the same paragraph. I can appreciate that." If you appreciated anything today, I'd love if you wrote a quick review. See you next week. And remember, all it takes is a goal. This episode of the podcast was brought to you by Medi-Share. ext JON, J-O-N to 474747 for ore information. Huge thank y u to Medi-Share for sponsoring t. J-O-N t

Producer:

Thanks for listening. To learn more about the All It Takes Is A Goal podcast and to get access to today's show notes, transcript, and exclusive content from Jon Acuff, visit Ac ff.me/podcast. Thanks aga n for joining us. Be sure to t ne in next week for another epis de of the All It Takes Is Goal p