Guest Editorials

How to Change for Good

Have you ever met someone who lost 30 pounds and kept it off? Have you ever witnessed a couch potato morph into a competitive athlete? I have! My work as a personal trainer provides me the rare opportunity to witness amazing transformations. Here’s how it works.

Plot Your Course

Successful individuals follow a powerful, controllable and predictable course of change that involves a deep understanding of the stages that will determine personal success.

Move Through the Stages to Achieve Personal Change

Successful self-changers go through the following stages, so you need to identify which stage you are in, and make a plan to move to the next stage.

•    Stage 1: “I don’t need to change.” Here, you don’t yet have a desire or interest in making changes. To snap out of this stage, identify specific reasons you might need to change. (Are you taking medications? Can you walk to the end of the block and back without being winded? Are you constantly tired, completely lacking energy?)

•    Stage 2: “I know I need to change.” Stage two-ers are interested in learning how to begin to live healthy. Here is where you’ll take a close look at your motivation to change. Are you wondering what you could achieve in the future if you were healthier? Are you looking for energy to play with your kids when you get home from work? Are you looking to make a job change? Are you trying to attract a mate? No matter what your motivation is, write it down and reflect on it daily. Determine where that motivation ranks in your life.

•    Stage 3: “I’m planning to make a change.” In this stage, concrete steps are taken to incorporate change into your lifestyle, such as buying equipment, joining a gym, scheduling classes, planning meals and setting specific short-term and long-term goals.

•    Stage 4: “I am changing!” At this level, you are making healthier choices. To help you change permanently, make sure you’re making long-term lifestyle choices and not relying on fad diets for fast results. It is important to find activities that you enjoy so you’ll stay on your program.

•    Stage 5: “I want to stay changed.” In this stage, you’re doing the right things to live a healthy lifestyle, and new behaviors have become a habit. Remember to commit to your new change for at least 30 days!

Identify and Document Your Goals

Now that you have identified where you are in the transformation process and why you want to change, identify a specific, measurable and achievable goal. Break your goal into smaller steps like:

“Today I’ll park at the back of the lot and walk,” or “Today I’ll pack a healthy lunch.” It will be the little victories that will keep you motivated. Journal your goals and accomplishments to remember where you started, and celebrate how far you’ve come.

Don’t Go It Alone

When it comes to attaining personal goals, coaching, ongoing support and encouragement are crucial to sustaining lasting life-change progress. A strong relationship with a friend, spouse or coach helps you to be honest with yourself and provides accountability and support. Find a mentor and schedule time daily or weekly to share your victories and work through your challenges.

No matter where you are in the change process, stay the course. You’ll get there! And remember: “Without Good Health, Nothing Else Matters.”

Lamis Your “Tough Love” Personal Trainer is located at King Studio, 1400 Foothill Dr. (Above Stein Mart). For more information call (801) 815-7725 or the studio at (801) 906-8501, or email You can also visit

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