We’ve all heard it. It’s the most popular cliché this time of year: “New year, new me.” But as we think about next year, we have to look back to last year. Many of us probably had disappointing ends to last year’s resolutions—especially those pertaining to wellness and health. (There are years that I sure have!) But there’s no need to give up. There’s no reason to walk away in defeat. It’s time to get what you want in terms of fitness! In this three-part series, I want to give you the tools and state of mind to get there.
I’m no stranger to pain, and I’m no stranger to body transformation. At one time, I was a dental professional who was unhappy with my fitness. I struggled mightily with musculoskeletal pain. Look at my before-and-after photos. The photo on the left is from 2004. I’m a dental student who is struggling and in pain. But the photo on the right is me now. It shows me years out from dental school. I’m out of pain and back in shape.
As someone who’s been down this unpleasant road, I know what it takes to persevere and get what you want. I also know that no New Year’s resolution will get you the progress you desire just because the calendar year turns over. What will get you there are two things: First, it requires a decision to change. Second, it takes steady, consistent work toward your goal. That’s how it happened for me. I got completely fed up with the state of my body, and I took action to change it. What I learned, I will share.
In 2004, I was in dental school. My fitness had plummeted to an all-time low. My problems began innocently as “a twinge.” It happened when I did a slight twist to pick up a handpiece. Then, the pain started to radiate down my back. As days passed, a feeling that was bothersome became unbearable. It hurt to turn my head. It hurt to sit down. It hurt to study. It hurt to see my patients. Yet, I saw no reason to modify my daily clinical routine or fitness plan.