Successful business moguls don't make the Forbes list by being unorganized, uneducated, and frivolous with their money. They take their time, craft a plan, and make smart decisions. You should approach your health and fitness the same way you would approach starting a business: thoughtfully and wholeheartedly.
You may have heard these rules in economics class, but we're taking them in a different direction. Your best, most important investment is your health and longevity. Even the smallest ante will pay big dividends. Think of fat as debt and lost inches as profit. Make fitness your business.
1 / Develop a Detailed Plan
No bank would give a startup loan to someone who doesn't have a plan. Although you don't need a bank or a loan to start a more healthy life, you do need a plan. Without a good schedule and program, your fitness enterprise will never get off the ground.
Before you walk into a gym, you should visualize and map out what you plan to accomplish. By doing this, you reduce risk and protect your investment (time, money, and yourself). Know yourself and your capabilities, and make sure your written plan works within the parameters of your abilities.
It's also a good idea to constantly revisit and re-evaluate your goal. If you need to make adjustments, do it. Your better health may not ever come if you're bored, losing focus, or unmotivated. Your productivity needs to be consistently high if you want to make a profit.
2 / Seek Professional Advice
Before starting a business, you may need to solicit the advice of bankers, lawyers, and accountants. You also might ask fellow entrepreneurs about what works and how successful businesses are made.
In the fitness realm, a trainer, health coach, or even magazines and web content are great sources to consult in the search for information.
Professional information—from any source—can help you get started, manage your routine, increase motivation, identify problems, and formulate solutions.
Although you won't always hear what you want to, honest feedback and intelligent communication will help you improve and move forward.
You'll be able to surmount hurdles, survive periods of stagnation, and be more mindful about what's going on in the industry of your health.
3 / Persist
Without persistence, many famous and influential people would never have succeeded. Walt Disney's first animation company went bankrupt. Twenty-seven different publishers rejected Dr. Seuss's first book. The Beatles were passed up by numerous record labels.
Anyone can give up; it's the easiest thing to do. But to keep trying, no matter how many times you fail, requires true strength. If you're in the biz of building your body, your path won't always be easy. Your body weight and body fat percentage will fluctuate; muscles will come and go; and your max lifts might decrease.
With hard work and persistence, you will be able to continually raise the bar higher and higher.
4 / Supplement for Growth
By supplementing your income, it's possible to free funds and put them to good use. If your business only makes enough money to pay the cost of running it, extra income can translate into growth. The same can be said about your diet.
Depending on your goals, you may be eating fewer calories and getting fewer vitamins and minerals than you should. If you don't get all the nutrients your body needs, you can't work at an optimal level. Eventually, you may bankrupt your body and be nowhere near your health and fitness goals.
Supplements can help fill in the gaps where your diet is lacking. If you're not getting everything you need from food, add a multivitamin, take minerals, or include BCAAs, protein powder, and fish oils in your daily routine. These basic supplements can benefit your diet plan and sometimes translate into the growth you're looking for.
5 / Lay Off the Credit
Business success shouldn't hinge on using credit. It's too easy to overspend. Before you know it, you might be drowning in debt and unable to resurface. In the fitness world, there's no such thing as building up "credit." Yes, rewarding yourself for going to the gym and eating clean can be a great way to keep from going crazy.
However, what started out as a cheat meal could likely turn into a cheat day, a cheat life. It's pretty easy to tell yourself that it's OK, and you'll just pay it off later.
Sure you could do an extra HIIT session to make up for that piece of cake, but that type of thinking is dangerous and often leads to bad practices. Stay within your means and you'll find that success will inch ever closer.
6 / Save, Save, and Save
Saving money is just good common sense. With savings, you can plan for growth, emergencies, and sudden drops in revenue. A stockpile of money doesn't happen overnight; it takes a lot of time to turn a little money into a lot of money.
Your healthy lifestyle is also not going to happen instantly. To be successful, you need to know that time will only increase your knowledge, hard work, and motivation. Let it all pile up, like money in the bank.
Small things like getting coffee without sugar, eating more protein, and taking the stairs all add up to healthy behaviors. These behaviors become habits and these habits grow together to become a lifestyle. Everything you initially struggled with will seem effortless. The time and work you put into yourself will yield great results. You can look forward to a longer, healthier, happier life.