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Preference

There are different ways to solve problems. I've noticed that there's a continuum that these solutions rest on. On the left side are solutions that attack the symptoms of the problem. They're the easiest to implement quickly. On the other side are the solutions that attack the root of the problem, but are the hardest to implement.

Take weight loss. Going from left to right along the continuum, you'll find liposuction, lap band, eating disorders, following fad diets, eating packaged "health" foods and shakes, eating somewhat healthy food, and eating really healthy food. Most people would be able to think of all of those solutions to their weight problems, and might pick one along the continuum somewhere.

But there's actually one more solution, so far to the right on the continuum that most people wouldn't even think of it. For weight loss, that solution is to PREFER healthy food. A change in preference. Think about it-- if you LIKE healthy food more than you like unhealthy food, you will never gain weight again. Impossible, even if you don't exercise. More importantly, if you prefer healthy food, there's no stress associated with weight loss. You're just eating foods that you like. What's easier than that?

Changing your preference for food isn't easy, though. It's not like getting a lap band. To change your preference for food you have to learn a lot. What makes food healthy? What are the exceptions? You have to understand the biological impact that bad food has on the various systems of your body. That's the leverage that holds the preference in place. When you learn about how sugar abuses your pancreas, it's a little less appealing in your mind. You learn about how factory farms raise their animals, and that sort of meat is less appealing. Changing preferences is hard work, and it takes time and effort and energy, but it produces lasting change.

Loving Work

On Cameron Chardukian

When I was younger, I hated work.  It didn’t matter what kind of work it was, I always found a way to avoid doing anything that required a significant amount of effort.  On the rare occasions I did work I never did any more than the absolute minimum that was required of me.

This is how most people operate.  Most people see work as a dreaded necessity in their lives and will do almost anything to avoid it.  It’s been said that people are naturally lazy, but I don’t think that’s the problem.  The problem is most people don’t see why hard work is necessary.

When I first started lifting weights I found it very difficult, but I continued because I thought that eventually working out would become effortless.  As you might imagine, I was wrong.  

As I became stronger, and began lifting more weights, working out actually became more difficult.  As I progressed to lifting more and more weight I began to realize the strongest guys in the gym weren’t the strongest because they had been lifting the longest.  They were the strongest because they were able to work through the most pain.  They were the ones willing to work the hardest.

Another interesting thing I noticed, was that although most people dreaded having to work out, the strongest guys actually looked forward to it, and many even considered it the best part of their day.  The strongest guys loved working out because they saw it as being necessary.  The strongest guys worked out because they knew it was the only way to reach their goals.  

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