I mostly just remember feeling red-faced and embarrassed.
It was many years ago.
I was sat with a big group of people on a gym floor.
We were listening to a strength coach talking about bad posture and injuries.
Mostly, how to prevent them by fixing the posture issues.
I’d hurt my shoulder recently and was totally guilty about the posture problems he was talking about.
So, when he asked the group: “does anyone have any shoulder issues right now? “
I thought: ‘Sweet. Let’s see if he can help me fix this’.
I raised my hand.
He got me up in front of the group and the first thing he said was: “Take your shirt off, buddy. Let’s have a look”
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I didn’t expect that.
I was stood in front of a thirty or so group of men and women half-naked.
I was fit and strong.
But, I didn’t look it with my t-shirt off.
At that moment, I started to rethink my food choices and weekend behaviors.
More often than not, it takes feeling very uncomfortable before we’re willing to make uncomfortable changes.
I hear similar stories and reasons for change from lots of my readers and men who come to our programs.
I had an email recently from reader, Dave.
His goal is purely to take his kids swimming without feeling self-conscious about his body.
I feel for you, Dave.
I used to share the same feeling.
I’d spend as much time as possible in the deep-end, or sit in the shallow end to keep everything below shoulder underwater.
And there’d always be that one or two dads in the pool I’d look at, thinking, I want to be that dad who can come in here any day of the week looking cool AF.
(Maybe you know the feeling, too?).
Back to Dave…
He struggles to stick to an exercise routine.
And he’s tried doing the Forever Living shakes.
Which worked for him.
He became dependant on the shakes, and when he eventually stopped them, he went back to square one.
Now he’s feeling lost for what’s the best exercise and nutrition strategies to reach the goal?
Ideally, I’d like a little more context on where Dave’s currently at with his weight, body fat, fitness, and experience levels.
I don’t have this info.
So, let me do my best to answer with some solid general advice:
Stop relying on shakes and supplements.
Quick disclaimer: I don’t know much about Forever Living.
And I’m not dissing supplements here.
In fact, I’m a believer in supplements myself.
I take omega 3, D3+K2, a multi vit+mineral, and magnesium.
All to support my health and recovery from hard workouts.
NOT because they’ll eliminate my love handles and burst my sleeves open with muscle.
Because they won’t. .
These things are SUPPLEMENTARY.
Where do I see an issue?
Putting your hopes of having a nice body into a supplement plan.
Sure, these things can help in some roundabout ways.
But if you’re carrying too much body fat?
Or too little muscle?
Or both? (which I see a lot of).
It’s not because you’re not on the right shake or juice plan.
It’s because you don’t have healthy, lean, strong habits (yet).
Ask any man who’s in truly healthy and in good shape.
They’ll tell you about their workouts.
Their active hobbies.
The foods they eat every day (even on weekends).
The great sleep they get.
And all the years they’ve been doing it.
In other words, they’ll tell you about their lifestyle.
Not the shakes or supplements.
Make your body stronger.
Now I don’t care if you train at home or in a gym.
Whether you start with just bodyweight and a couple of dumbbells.
Or fully kit out your garage or room.
If you want to take your kids swimming with CONFIDENCE.
Feel great about yourself in a fitted t-shirt.
Or get more action between the sheets.
Lifting weight is the most efficient exercise to shift an embarrassing belly.
Plus, it slows down the aging process because it reverses the muscle loss associated with age.
So, if you haven’t already, get started.
Let’s wrap this up:
^^ Get better at those.
And you’ll start loving what’s looking back in that mirror.
Get after it.
PS – Let me show you how to shift your unwanted belly fat and define your body for FREE.
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Dean McMenamin is an Army veteran, father, dog-lover and online nutrition & exercise coach helping busy men transform their bodies, regain self-confidence and be healthier role models for their kids. He's also a big eater of ice-cream.