3 Simple Areas of Life Ruining Your Fitness (And What You Can Do About It)

If you're struggling with your diet, workouts, motivation, or any other healthy habit -- assess these three important areas.

1. Yourself

Is your mindset one of growth that views skills, challenges, and goals as mere obstacles that are achievable, acquired, or developed? Or, do you have a fixed mindset, where you use genetics, blame people, and random life excuses as to why you can't accomplish your fitness goals.
Your beliefs dictate your feelings, which dictate your actions.

When it comes to beliefs, are you letting pre-existing beliefs guide the everyday story arc of your life? Are you letting pre-existing beliefs create invisible scripts in your head about why you can't do something?

You have the option of choosing to accept these pre-existing beliefs or to acknowledge those beliefs, but take action, even if your mind is telling you otherwise.

Abandon your comfort zone -- only then will growth and transformation occur.

2. Your circle of network

You are who you hangout with and where you hangout. When you're evaluating your circle of influence, ask yourself this simple question: "Are my friends, family, peers, and environment inspiring and motivating me or are they uninspiring and deflating my spirits."

Anything that isn't a resounding yes needs to be released.

If you can't completely let go of someone for whatever reason, you can reduce your time around them. This at least minimizes the exposure of time and negative energy.

It's normal for some family members, co-workers, or friends to give you flack when you're attempting to make a fitness and lifestyle change. If you succeed, they lose all their excuses as to why they can't make a change. By changing, you force them to look themselves in the mirror and realize that the only thing stopping them from achieving their fitness goals are themselves (not anyone else).

3. Your consumption and value placed in media

Finely constructed pictures on Instagram; radical transformation stories on Facebook; flawless magazine portraits; curated depictions on television--our media consumption is our worst enemy. Our media consumption leads to unrealistic expectations for ourselves and paints a distorted image of what a successful transformation encompasses.

The perception of these radical weight loss stories only exposes a fraction of the story. For every few success stories that implements these results at any costs approach -- there's a multitude of individuals who have failed with this approach.

It's tempting to place your self-worth over the number on the scale, but don't forget the trade-offs for these instantaneous results: less than optimal metabolic rates, skewed eating behaviors, and a slew of other potential health problems. Most of those before and after photos are an illusion; it's easy to manipulate your body image on camera by lighting and body positioning.

Before you compare yourself to external sources, think about your specific situation.

Sure, some of these social media fitness heroes are perfectly sculpted, but they also have a schedule that allows them to train for multiple hours daily. Most of them don't have the various day-to-day responsibilities that you have. Remember, they're professionals that get paid to look ripped and be militant with their diets.

Question for you: Which of these three areas are you struggling with the most and what do you plan to do about it?