Starting small is progress.

Starting small can also be humbling.

There is an ancient Chinese proverb that states “the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”.

The Pride Hurdle

When I first got stated with my fitness, I had an image that I thought being successful at the gym looked like. I am sure I am not the only one who grabbed his first weights and had the goal of looking like some NFL Linebacker or “Rambo”. It didn’t take long before I realized that my max bench wasn’t even close to what was going to get me to that idolized body image. Looking around, there were guys that seemed smaller and weaker to me putting up more weight than I could. So my pride took a bit of a hit.

I was in my early 30’s when I finally learned the importance of finance. I was spending every dollar I earned plus more on credit. My savings were none existent. Living above my means, I needed to get back to reality. I knew that some of my peers were far ahead of me with their finances. I was starting at below zero net worth. Again, my pride got knocked down a couple of pegs.

Humble Steps

With both my finances and my fitness, I was starting in the shallow end. That was okay. The point is that I was starting. By simply recognizing the importance of both of these aspects of life, I was already ahead of those who hadn’t. Taking that first step was the most important part of the process. Starting small and being humble.

Progress is slow and steady. I started out on the light side of the dumbbell rack. I also began with a mound of credit card debt. With small, incremental gains, I am making progress toward my goal. Small, daily gains are adding up. A savings rate of 10% or making gains on a personal best squat seemed like a distant dream. Now, not only are those goals achieved, I am building on them. It did not happen overnight and I did not come without some discomfort. The journey of one thousand miles starts with one step… and continues with thousands of small steps after. Keep your head up and keep grinding. Moving forward is progress no matter how slow or small.