Thanks to the loving encouragement of his fiancé, a passion for outdoor cycling and the occasional nudge from yours truly, my client Alejandro has made incredible strides on his bike, in the gym and in the kitchen this year. His efforts have not only improved his physique, but also improved his health, energy levels and mental outlook. In this post he discusses what changes he had to make to shift his mindset and what keeps him going when the snooze button beacons or the hills get steep.
1. What has been the biggest struggle in terms of getting your fitness in gear and what helped you overcome it to achieve the results you are seeing now?
Building the confidence to assume changes in habits that seemed difficult to modify at first. Simple things like going to bed a bit earlier, not having that IPA after work, waking up early even when it hurts and getting on the bike again even when my legs are sore. The little struggles that in the big scheme of things seem insignificant, but can be tough in daily life. I had to learn to change the inner voice from "Ugh..." to "Come on! You can do it!"
2. You cycle A LOT! Talk to me about how it makes you feel and why you love it so much.
I love two things:
- Fulfillment of "getting somewhere" with just my body. Sometimes I find myself in places 20-30 miles away from home and think about how awesome it is to make it so far with just my legs.
- The moments of solitude when all you hear is your breathing and all your focus is on form; all while outside surrounded my nature and gorgeous views.
3. Any advice for folks who might be considering starting outdoor cycling?
The pain decreases! You can actually get to a point where you enjoy going uphill more than downhill! Just patiently do your hills and track your efforts. The legs will get strong and eventually you’ll find yourself looking for new climbs!
4. You and your fiancé seem to be quite the supportive pair. Does having a partner who supports your fitness goals help you stay consistent?
It does. Especially when the wedding is a few months away and you both want to look good for the pictures!! My fiancé pushed me into meeting JJ and has played a pivotal role in this process (from pushing me to wake up to helping me stretch, always with a smile!). It was thanks to her that I had a chance to ignite this change.
5. I know a big driver for you over the past few months has been your upcoming wedding. Feeling the difference between the "old Alejandro" and the "new Alejandro" what are your plans post nuptials? Keep up with your new lifestyle?
Kidding aside, the wedding was a trigger for what I hope will be a defenite change in lifestyle. I am turning 40 next year, want to start a family and don’t want to lose this feeling of somewhat controlling aspects of my life that where driven by inertia of old habits. I like feeling strong, riding my bike, having weekly workout sessions with JJ to strengthen the rest of the body, waking up early, having more energy, not feeling hungover and the mental clarity that comes with an active healthy lifestyle.