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2 More Factors for Goal Achievement
Plus: What is a realistic physique goal?
On one hand, I feel disrespected. On the other, I feel complimented.
Recently I posted about my “20 in 12 Challenge” on Facebook.
My post was removed for “unrealistic goals”.
The wild part is that losing 20 pounds of pure fat mass in 12 weeks is the standard, not the outlier.
That might sound like a stretch to the Facebook employee who took my post down, but I imagine they didn’t make their living transforming physiques for the past decade like I have.
If Facebook gave me a programming assignment for a senior software engineer, I would probably think that was unrealistic - because I’m not a senior software engineer.
The 4th Critical Factor
When I wrote my article on The 3 Critical Factors for Goal Achievement, I took the fourth factor for granted.
The fourth factor is an effective plan.
The greatest challenge working in the health and fitness industry is that almost everybody is an expert, even though almost nobody has a remotely impressive physique or has ever produced one. Some people take this personally, and maybe they should. You have to pay your dues in any profession.
Nobody would claim to be an electrical engineer because they have a cell phone, but people watch a Netflix documentary, lose 10 pounds, and start a coaching business.
There’s a lack of respect for fitness professionals because the vast majority of them are ineffective, regardless of degrees or certifications. 57% of personal trainers quit by the second year, and only 8% make it past a decade. How can you reasonably expect to be effective with a year of experience?
Now let’s be clear about a few important points before we continue.
Some people are making incremental changes to maintain or improve their health, and many coaches have this type of approach. Most Americans would change their life by making simple lifestyle changes such as increasing exercise, improving food choices, drinking more water, etc.
That’s honestly a beautiful thing, especially because most won’t make even the most basic changes to their lifestyle for their health. The cultural norm is to eat and drink as you please because you’d rather “live your life” than tend to your body’s fundamental needs.
But here’s the part nobody wants to hear: you will not develop an extraordinary physique by making “better choices here and there”.
If you want to go from obese to a healthy weight, you can take care of the low hanging fruit and make a couple major changes.
But that is not the type of client who will achieve a remarkable physique.
For example, I helped Frank get from 32% to 20% with some nutrition guidelines and routine exercise. That’s a reasonable physique. And that’s with a 14-point skin fold assessment with Harpenden calipers, so it is much more accurate than other methods, which may have come up with much lower numbers.
It took 2 years to go from 32% to 28% with the incremental approach. When Frank made his body the priority he made major changes to get from 28% to 20% in 5 months. Then he was stuck at 20% and wanted to, in his words, “go to the next level”. When we reverse engineered his objective and constructed a detailed plan, we took him from 20% to 12% in 10 weeks.
David Lawrence, who I consider a mentor and a role model and who I believe to be one of the most effective strength coaches in the world today, has a motto for his training centers: “3 years of results in 3 months.”
Frank had the first 3 factors: purpose, faith, and alignment.
We added two more factors: the plan and the price.
The 5th Factor
Losing 20 pounds of pure fat mass in 12 weeks is not an unrealistic goal, but it does require a substantial investment.
No, you don’t have to win the lottery and quit your job to transform your physique, but it does need to be your priority.
Frank is pictured below - he lost 17 pounds of pure fat mass in 9 weeks while running a manufacturing company and managing household responsibilities.
Cassie lost 15 pounds of pure fat mass in 8 weeks, and didn't lose a single pound of lean mass while working a challenging full time job and continuing her education.
Frank and Cassie both had incredible work ethic, they trained intensely, prepared their meals, and consistently followed every detail in their plan.
What is the fifth factor? Price.
You must pay the price to achieve your objective, and the price is effort.
Extraordinary results require extraordinary effort.
There is absolutely no replacement for hard work.
Combining the 5 Factors
Now, here’s how the 5 factors come together to produce unbelievable results:
Establish a specific, measurable goal with a timeline, attached to a powerful purpose that compels you.
You must have faith in your goal; the belief that you can achieve it in the timeline selected.
You must align your life with the goal, which requires you to address your hierarchy of values. If you have conflicts in your life, they will sabotage your progress.
Even if you have the above 3, without an effective plan, you will not succeed.
Even if you have the above 4, every goal has a price you must pay, a plan you must execute.
At the end of the day, it’s this simple:
If you want professional results, hire a qualified professional. That’s the way it is in every other profession.
And if you want extraordinary results, not only do you need an effective plan, you need to invest extraordinary effort.
If you want results so unreal they’ll get your post removed on Facebook, go to honorstrength.com/20in12
Yours in strength,
Daniel J. Furtado, CPT, LMT, Owner of Honor Strength
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