So, you decided to join the gym and get your diet on track, good for you buddy. But before you take that first step into the gym, or start cutting back calories, you have to ask yourself: “Why am I doing this?”
Ask yourself these 3 questions
Do you exercise and watch what you eat so that you can:
1) Keep your blood pressure in check??
2) Have more energy??
3) Live longer cause some blah blah study at some Ivy League university said so??
Well… if you answered YES to any of these 3 questions, then you are a fucking liar.
Yeah sure… dieting and exercising can help you with those 3 things, but nobody would do it if their physical appearance didn’t improve.
I truly believe that the #1 reason we start exercising and dieting is to look better.
Please don’t hate me
I know its vain and some may even say selfish, but its the truth, and you know it. The fact is that most people are too embarrassed to admit it. Just go up to any of your friends or family members who go to the gym and ask them why they do it. I am willing to bet my left nut that their answer is not “Because I want to look good” or anything similar to that.
However, I am willing to bet that their answer is along the lines of “Oh, I want to become healthier” or “I want to get into better shape”.
The problem with these types of answers is that people are basically lying to themselves and are using these answers to mask their underlying motives so that they don’t feel like self-centered individuals.
So what should you say
Now this is tricky water to navigate. I don’t expect people to just blurt out “I go to the gym so that I can look good naked.” People just don’t say that. It’s a bit too much. I totally get it.
If you did say this, I’m betting that the person you said it to will respond along the lines of “Oh… but don’t you want to be healthy too?”
This makes be want to shoot myself sometimes. People need to understand that for the most part, a physically attractive body is a healthy body. If you have a decent amount of muscle mass and have a low body fat percentage, then you are probably as healthy as you can be.
Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s possible for someone to not receive some sort of negative criticism when using the “look good” reason. It’s because of this expected negative criticism that most people revert back to the default “get healthy” reason.
Who can get away with using the “look good” reason
However, there is one very special group of people that can get away with saying that they work out strictly for looks.
These are people whose jobs depend on their physique. This group of people includes fitness models, bodybuilders, actors/actresses, and porn stars. If anyone in this group let their body slip, I’m guessing they wouldn’t be able to find much work.
Yes, I know there are exceptions. I know that there are actors who only get jobs because they’re on the heavier side, and I know that there are people out there who are into BBW(big beautiful women) porn, but let’s face it, those people are in the minority.
Take the “what if” test
“But Keith, I really just want to to start exercising and dieting so that I can be healthier and have more energy.”
Oh really? Okay then, I believe you. But first can you read the following and choose #1 or #2?
What if we lived in an alternate universe where:
1) Exercising and dieting made you super fat and incredibly ugly. However, you’ll be classified as a healthy individual.
2) Not exercising and dieting made you look absolutely incredible. However, you’ll be classified as an unhealthy individual.
What did you choose?
If you chose #1, then congratulations, you are probably one the world’s greatest liars. Go quit your job right now and become a professional grifter.
But if you chose #2, then I will give you a virtual hug for telling the truth.
There are very few people in this world that are willing to sacrifice their physical appearance, even if it means improving their health.
Sad but true.
By reading this article, I hope that I have at least opened up your eyes to why people diet and exercise.
Our society just puts so much emphasis on physical appearances these days, it’s crazy. Just look at all the teenagers who use tanning beds. Just look at the millions of men who use HGH to enhance muscle growth. Just look at the 70 year old women getting botox injections. You get the picture.
Don’t try and rationalize your own decision to watch what you eat and exercise by saying that you want to be healthier, when in reality, you just want to look better. There is nothing wrong with wanting to look better, especially in the world we live in.
Note: Please don’t get the wrong impression. Wanting to avoid injury, have more energy, and stay disease free your entire life are both great things to want and have, but in reality, they are just VERY VERY nice extras that come along with looking good.