I’m sure everyone has heard the old saying, “Failure is not an option”. Usually it involves some type of spy or military action movie where the hero has declared that the characters must win at all cost. In life, especially in the area of fitness, however, failure is an option. That is you do have a choice to give up or keep going from wherever you find yourself in your journey to health and fitness.

Failure occurs the moment you quit trying to succeed whether it’s fitness, business, sports, or anything in life a person might strive to achieve a certain goal. Quitting any goal removes all hope that you will ever achieve that goal. As long as you keep moving forward toward a goal no matter what the odds are against you, you retain the hope of success.

Take away hope, and you take away a person’s will and chance at happiness. The hope or promise of something better makes today all the more enjoyable. Don’t get discouraged if you try and fail to lose weight, build muscle, ran that mile faster, or whatever your goal is. As long as you get up every morning with that goal still in your heart and mind, and you keep putting one foot in front of the other toward that goal you haven’t failed yet. The quitter is the only one who we can say has truly failed. The person that chooses to stop trying, chooses to accept failure.

Considering how vital hope is to the individual, it’s important to make smaller short term goals to go along with long term goals. Seeing success at any level does wonders to motivate and keep us going toward our more long term difficult goals down the line, and it’s much easier to reach those small steps than the ones much farther away.

Proverbs 13:12 KJV

Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.

While fitness takes a lot of resolve and determination sometimes, don’t make it out as an all out war all the time. Having a warrior’s mentality toward fitness isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but for the sake of not getting burned out, try to keep it fun along the way.

Switch out to different exercise programs from time to time to keep things fresh even if they don’t necessarily directly correlate with your specific fitness goals. Having a wide variety of exercises and fun things to do make it a lot easier to be fit overall. There’s a million things a person can do to live a fit life and have fun at the same time. Go walking, bike riding, swimming, play sports, toss a Frisbee, play with your dog, chase the kids, mow the lawn, garden, run, lift weights, chop wood, etc.

Just whatever you do, don’t stop. The same thing goes for eating right. If you jump off the wagon and eat ice cream one day, that’s no big deal. Just start again the next day, or the very next meal, eating healthy again. Besides, occasionally eating something fattening is fine, but just as I recommend in my book, Common Sense Biblical Approach to Health and Fitness, don’t bring unhealthy things home. Make drinking a coke, or eating ice cream something you do only on a special occasion. Junk food you take home usually comes in larger quantities, and, once you have it opened, the temptation to keep eating it will be too great. A serving or two once a week, is one thing, but all day, and part of the next is way too much.

Still even if you mess up a whole day, or even a week don’t quit, just get started again. As I’ve said before, the best way to eat right is not bring junk food home period. Make home a junk food free zone.

In the end, failure is never final, and not even a reality until or unless you allow it to be. As long as you purpose in your heart to keep trying, and mean it, then failure is truly not an option.