118: The Psychology of Fitness: 1, 2, 3


All right. I’m going to workshop this idea called the psychology of fitness. I wanted to write like a blog post or something like that. It’s been a while. It’s always been a while. Going to try to get back on a regular cadence. I say that every single time, but anyway, maybe I won’t make any promises here.

I hope everyone’s having a good holiday. Heading into December. I heard this rule from Dan, John. He’s a fitness coach. He invented the goblet squats. So if you’ve done a goblet squat, he. Is the person that named it helped to popularize it. Add. He has this rule called or like this goal that sounded dumb too. If he acknowledges it sounds a little unconventional and.

Yeah, a few years ago, I was like, ah, that seems like a dumb goal. Not dumb, but it seems too easy.

Now it really applies. And I wish I had followed it. His rule is. Try to lose one pound a year. Basically, don’t let it tick up over the decades. It adds up very slowly, but those years can go fast. Heading into 2023, of course, going to try to. Clean things up, especially in December This time between Thanksgiving and Christmas is crucial because it can feel like the holidays, but.

There’s three holidays. Let’s say for, so let’s count Christmas Eve. For me, of course I do celebrate this thing. So Thanksgiving, Christmas, Eve, Christmas day. New year’s Eve new year’s day. So five but then. Certainly in some years, I’ve just been like it’s the holidays. And then just eat crazy.

want to clean it up for December. That’s why I’m thinking. A good thing to focus on would be psychology of fitness and what I’m going to do. I’m just going to set a timer for four minutes for three ideas. And then eventually my goal would be to get through 20. Maybe that can be my goal for December or something like that.

So I’ll do let’s call it a four minute timer for each of these ideas and just to be clear. The w the source of these quotes will be. This book called the psychology of money by Morgan Housel. I’m guessing it’s like one of the best-selling books of the last few years for like non-fiction I think

There’s a few so that there was of course, like subtle art and then atomic habits. And I think David Goggins book is some insane bestseller as well. Of course, plenty of other books, but Psychology of money by Morgan Housel is one of these on personal finance and great book if you haven’t checked it out, but it’s yeah. Different chapters and he just talks about

Some principle about or I dunno the principal, but Just, he tells stories about. Money and then relates it to personal finance and why we all have these different views of finance and how you should invest your money, spend your money, save your money. Anyway. I’ll take a quote from that.

And then trying to relate it to fitness. I think a lot of it is just like psychology, how you approach fitness and health and eating?

Because we all know, like it is. Somewhat as simple as move more, eat less, but it’s never as simple as that. And the thing to remember, or The thing that often gets lost is that. Eating it like, oh, abs are made in the kitchen. That’s a pretty common thing. But that’s why it’s the hardest thing is that.

It’s somewhat simple, straightforward, almost easy to. If it, all it took was to work out for an hour a day. And that was the only thing you needed to do. That’d be great, but you have to. For 23 other hours of the day, you have to eat right and not snack and do all these things. So good to talk about that. I’ve been talking for four minutes already.

I was hoping to make this intro one minute, but maybe this is good for introducing the idea of catching up. A little bit on what’s going on. I’ll talk about maybe like my home gym as I go along with this. Like those different things. Let me just get started. Okay. Sending this timer four minutes.

Times three. So these first. Three things. Psychology of fitness. Number one. Y everyone is doing everything wrong. Nobody’s crazy. And these are the subtitles from the psychology of money. So here’s the quote he says. No one is crazy. We all make decisions based on our own unique experiences.

That seemed to make sense to us in a given moment. In the buckets basically your parents teach you money values early on. And a lot of that can carry through. The rest of your life. And you’ll eventually get like more and more influences from there, but I don’t want to talk too much about like the fitness acts.

Or the finance. View of this ideas how this applies to fitness.

There’s so many different approaches to it. So so many different beliefs about. How to exercise properly. How to eat properly, what you should be eating. And a lot of it does come. From our parents to begin with this does remind me of the book. Wanting by Luke Burgess, where he talks about memetic desires and that the order of.

That you become influenced in like pickup. The things that you want first it’s from your parents and then it’s from your friends. And then eventually like more and more it’s by The media that you’re consuming. So if you are.

Scrolling through social media. Then that’s going to influence like the things that you want and.

And yeah, it is the thing that like personal experience just starts to shape different things. So this is why you get so many different opinions, so many

You just grab like a group of your friends and they’ll all have probably like somewhat different. And maybe some extreme. Differences between them. But here we go. I wrote a list of examples. So if you’ve hurt yourself doing CrossFit, you might have sworn it off. This was a personal experience of mine. I had, I didn’t swear it off. Actually. I tried it like three or four times.

Always would get injured within few months, but I still think it’s good. I think it was one meat, like it’s on me to just be better. Like not lifting as heavy. Or not trying to push it too much or practicing my form. But then. Other times it was just like what I would see is like a very good coach that but let it, and then, or owned the gym.

And it does that good coaching doesn’t necessarily always trickle down. Yeah. Or just trying to do it, just trying to do too much. That’s on my end. Once you get like that unlimited. Membership, you want to make the most of it, then you go on like multiple days in a row.

When you, your body’s really not ready for it, you haven’t progressed up to that. Okay. So more of them. If you’ve lost weight. Doing Quito then sometimes it’s it can seem like everyone. Not doing it is nuts. Like why wouldn’t they want to like, do this? It’s so fun to eat steaks and that sort of thing.

I’ve lost weight doing that. And then the thought like, wow, everyone should do this. If you’ve gained weight back doing keto, then you might think that everyone else on it will eventually gain it back. And that’s not true either. If you’ve maintained good health running daily. You might never understand why people lift weights. So this example is.

My dad always asks like me and my brother, like w

How we expect to be healthy at all, if we’re not running, because running has been like a core aspect of his life and more and more, I think he’s right. Like I should probably do more cardio. And that’s something that I will add in, but I won’t swap it out entirely for running or for yeah. Swap out like weightlifting for that.

And he doesn’t lift weight. And my dad doesn’t lift weights has good energy though. And it does just become like the trade offs that you want to

Except. So then another one, if you’ve maintained good aesthetics while weightlifting, you might never consider cardio for health and. This is. I guess the stereotype is probably if you’re in college, twenties, you care more about aesthetics. And if you. Are able to get to the physique that you want with weights. Then maybe you don’t consider cardio for health and you don’t understand why anyone would do it.

And yeah, just seeing this, like in my own life, just. All these different beliefs through every year of my life. And every decade where I think five years ago I was thinking, oh no, I just want to. Or even like, when I started this podcast, it was oh, I just want to feel good.

But then over like the past couple of years, I’m like, Oh, no, I should probably add muscle while I can, before. I get into an age. I’m probably almost there now. It was like before I get into an age where it’s extremely hard to put muscle on there’s just like a lot of leverage to. I don’t know if leverage is the right word, but like a lot of value to putting muscle on early.

When you can, and then you can it’s easier to maintain that through your life than to try to add it on later. Okay. I went over the timer there. So this next one, maybe this will be short. Psychology of fitness. Number two. I call this the weak bodybuilders, the wind powerlifters, the frail marathon runners.

And the subtitle here, luck and risk. Nothing is as good or bad as it seems. And here’s the book. From psychology of money. But more important is that as much as we recognize the role of luck, And success. The role of risk means we should forgive ourselves and leave room. For understanding when judging failures, nothing is as good or bad as it seems.

The story he tells in there is that. Bill gates had this wild success and had a lot of things going his way early on his parents and his neighbor. Say like neighborhood or like where he grew up. What his parents did. Set him all up. And that was a lot of luck, but the other side of that was risk and he had a best friend who passed away, had this kind of the same upbringing. And because of that

Wealthy upbringing. He was able to go, I think it’s like mountain climbing. So that’s a part of his life and then died during that. And that’s just like the opposite, like the, or like the reverse of luck that like the chances of that happening were as low as the chances of war. Four. Bill gates to become.

The richest person on earth. So how does this apply to fit there? So I’m trying to become elite in a sport is probably not the healthiest thing.

Even though playing sports regularly. Is one of the healthiest things you can do. It’s movement you’re with other people. So there’s the community aspect, but too if your a goal growing up is to be an Olympian and you don’t really like when you’re a kid, you don’t understand how hard that is.

And if you make that your singular goal and you don’t reach it, it’s very unlikely. Just percentage wise that you’ll reach it. And if that was what you’re dead set on and you think you’re, you have nothing to go. To turn to after that, that would be a pretty unhealthy thing.

Then there’s this. The more common thing is like, Everyone. That’s not everyone, but if you’re the best basketball player in your high school, you can get to college. You might start thinking like you might have a shot at the NBA, but it’s impossibly hard to like, Make it to the NBA.

But if you make it the goal Hey, I just want to get like a full ride through college. That’s great. And don’t put all of like the. Like your singular goal to. Making it to the NBA. Because yeah, Loxo genetics play a role, not the entire role. For SLA. I like fitness things like bodybuilder steroids play a role, not the entire role. There’s a ton of hard work and

They do have to just work out four hours a day. Yes. Drugs, help them recover, but they’re still like putting all the work in. And especially when it’s say bodybuilding where it’s like fair play, everyone else is doing that then. Yeah. Yeah. Like they know what game they’re playing.

Then. Let’s see. What else? What else did I have here?

Here we go. People with the six pack and this idea of Would you sacrifice all the good food that you eat? And the main question is how much are you willing to sacrifice? A lot of people are willing to sacrifice it. Like I said, the hour working out every day.

Because it can feel good to do that. In the moment or even But in the moment, maybe there’s like some pain in it, but if you’re playing sports, like it feels good to do that. And then after there’s the after glow of it but. Avoiding good food. He loved eating that’s just like painful.

Most of the time. So that becomes pretty difficult and then eating all that junk food. Say like someone that is out of shape. So an example I’ve seen is like Warren buffet, drinks, like regular Coca-Cola. I think he has a can a day, maybe multiple cans a day. So you can look at that and say like eating all that junk food is unhealthy.

But how unhealthy. Am I to like obsess over food. All the time and not that. I do but it is the thing of probably better to Relax. Have that Coke then too. Obsess over not having it for the rest of the day. I’m seeing, this is why I was saying like, I’m workshopping this. I don’t know that this all applies to luck and risk anyway. So working out at 4:00 AM every day can seem like torture. So that’s

The downside of it, but the feeling of discipline. Can be carried through the rest of the day. This is of course like Jocko, Willink talks about the importance of. Of discipline. And then he takes a picture of his watch many days, 4:30 AM doing his workout. Next up psychology of fitness, number three.

Never enough when rich people do crazy things. This is a book quote from psychology of money. Number one, the hardest financial skill is getting the goalpost to stop moving. Number two, social comparison is a problem here. And you see this in fitness that like Good health is one goal, but then if you.

You have like social media and you keep seeing like these people with perfect bodies over and over and over. And it’s oh no, you know what? Like maybe feeling good. Isn’t good enough. Maybe I need to look better. And then Oh, I look pretty good, but then like you start comparing it to the.

The entire rest of the world. And this is where the social comparison can be a problem that like, oh man I can look even better. And you can see like someone online did it faster. And the comparison used to be like to magazines. Like I’m not getting it done fast enough. This said I could get it like six pack and 12 weeks. But.

Actually, I couldn’t, there’s no six pack under there. Just. Should have focused on adding more muscle and then feeling good throughout the day is enough until it isn’t you want more and more. And I guess this also applies, I would say to the home gym. I’ve thought like they do joke about once you start the whole journey, you just will continue to add to it.

I used to always think, oh yeah. If I got Yeah, kettlebells enough to get a good workout. And so I got a few different kettlebells and then now I was like, oh no, you know what? If I get like a rack with a barbell, then I can do everything with that. And then, yeah, it just becomes comparison. You start looking at like different home gyms and I’m like, oh no, I need like a perfect lighting in there. Now I need a bike. I need some cardio equipment just adds up. And then I remember like when I was picking out like what rack to buy, just the ridiculousness of spending more time looking like each day for a couple of weeks, probably where I was just like looking at different home gyms for a longer.

In each day, then I was actually working out. So this was a thing of like priorities and getting that straightened out. With fitness. There’s never enough. It seems you can always do more. And. That’s. For this episode and next week, or hopefully like through the rest of December, I’ll keep working.

On these ideas, psychology fitness, definitely check out psychology of money. If you haven’t. It’s a great book.