Every once in a while, I’ll admit, I click on one of those insanely buff dudes in the sidebar of my Facebook page. You know, the ones where the tag line reads something like ‘new secret reveals ancient wisdom’s super easy way to get absolutely shredded while sleeping!’ My latest click actually involved something called “muscle rev x” and took me to the fascinating land of Men’s Health advertorials where the sales pitch ensued: lots of awesome before and after pictures [check out this link for the secret behind these magic tricks], sweeping references to “clinically proven” and “scientific research” and an ocean of comments from the fascinating land of “Bro-Merica” (no seriously! check it out… um, Bro?). This particular link was selling supplements though many links are portals for training programs that make similar claims – ‘get ripped in 6 minutes a day while drinking beer!’ My morning’s visit to these distant shores got me wondering why i’m not seeing more insanely ripped people out there these days given the quantity of these opportunities that seem to exist and the fact that all of us spend at least 3 hours a day on Facebook (right Bro?).
And while the answer might be clearly apparent to most, here is my version. These program/supplements aren’t creating an army of Gerard Butlers because of the difference between the theoretical truth and pragmatic truth. You see, all of these opportunities are really selling theoretical truths. It is possible to do regular six minute super high intensity workouts, integrate them with a shot glass full of beer, eat really healthy, and see awesome results. It is possible to take virtually any supplement as part of a solid exercise program and diet and radically change the way you look.
Pragmatically though, things are much more difficult. YOU (or whoever is wanting to get ripped, fit, or lose weight) don’t actually change in any significant way when you key in your credit card number to an online order form. The habits, desires, time management, etc that got you where you are will not yield to gentle pressure. There are no easy solutions. If you are out of shape or unhealthy it has taken a long time to get you that way – a long time spent making decisions that negatively impacted you health and fitness. Even when claims of supplements, for example, are true – they only (at best) accentuate any benefits (i.e cause slightly faster weight loss) provided by a meaningful switch to making healthier choices.
The bottom line is that if YOU don’t change – and stick with that change – then no amount of money will get you where you want to be. This is true regardless of what the tagline next to the buff dude tells you. The good news is that if you do really change, then you probably don’t need the supplements anyway, and it won’t really matter so much which particular training program you end up following.
The reason we’re not all super athletes with fit and healthy bodies is that significant change, the kind required for results – is very hard. So next time you see those ads Bro, remember that you’re being sold the theoretical truth and it is the pragmatic one that matters –
It’s (never) EASY! It (all) WORKS!
PS – did i get all the “Bros” right?