Health By Mind: Battle Mode for Weightloss
By Blake Letras
What makes a great race car driver? Do the great drivers have some kind of biological edge? Are they great because their hands can grip the steering wheel better than most due to some biological mutation? Is it that they have larger palms or a sixth finger? Nope. It’s because when it is time to go, they know how to enter their battle mode.
For weightloss, you need a different kind of battle mode. You can’t materialize a victory without mastering the ethereal realities of your consciousness. You need to realize that this isn’t a biological war between food and your body, it’s a spiritual war between mind and heart. The war on obesity or any addiction, indeed, is a war of your soul (yep, we’re going philosophy-deep).
Yes, currently your body is addicted, this state does mean that your body is working against you. But the body actually wants to operate correctly, it wants to function properly. The body will be confused by any change and react poorly at first, but it very quickly readjusts. Your body wants to be healthy, and it will get with the program in short order. Your body is like a soldier that needs boot camp, untrained for a certainty, but ready to learn. That’s not the problem. Your heart is the enemy.
"It’s cold outside, I want some hot cocoa! It’s hot outside, I want some ice cream! But marshmallows in hot cocoa with a slice of pie is so cozy! Eggnog is seasonal, I don’t have it all year round so its okay to indulge right now!"
SHUT UP, YOU!
The price of cozy, comfortable emotional rewards is high. That price is time, the precious resource ever more scarce by the day, hour, minute. We do it over and over, we always tell ourselves tomorrow we will act stronger, but tomorrow we are the same wimp day after day as time fades away from us. The result? Doooom!!! Tomorrow you will only be as tough as you are this moment, so don’t be tough tomorrow, get tough this instant and, stay that way.
Splash ice water over your head and grunt, "I am Spartacus!" What ever works, but you need that battle mode this second. Then tomorrow you actually will be tough. The war isn’t biological, hormones and emotions are involved, but they go away and readjust quick enough. The war is in your head and in your heart. You need to make yourself think right and you need to make yourself feel right. Get rough, get tough, hurrah!
Mastering Our Human Nature
Let’s assume you have no religious affiliations or beliefs, favoritisms or negative opinions at all. Clean slate, what’s the best representation of true human nature known to human history? Hands down, its the infamous collection of literature known as the Bible. Why? It’s such a brilliant piece of work with regard to revealing the struggles of both ancient and modern human experience. Regardless of your feelings toward it, there is no better record of human culture out there, and it truly is the most insightful about the human condition that has been experienced from age to age and region to region.
But the key reason I bring it up is its unique power to get your mind into battle mode. Why is it such a good tool for getting us into battle mode? I can’t think of another literary work able to get me into battle mode like it can, not even works written by Navy Seals. It’s because we truly get glimpses into characters going through major events and conquering, but unlike comic book characters, they are not unrelatably powerful, they are just like us, weak, yet choosing to be powerful.
Example 1: Paul. Was there ever a more tortured soul?
The poetic and self-conflicted Paul of the apostles was absolutely extraordinary. The notorious villain and hunter of the disciples, then called Saul, seemed to be on an unstoppable path of destruction, and it appeared only by a miracle would such an extreme man be changed. Interestingly enough, as the story goes, by way of a miracle he was changed, becoming Paul, the greatest of the apostles. Yes, he went from being Satan’s blade to the “Ambassador in Chains” as he would later pen. Acts, I have always thought, would make a seriously cool movie if done right.
Paul, now that guy was a man that ate, slept and breathed in battle mode. But he was far from the only guy, nevertheless these collections of stories are not flat and simple like Greek tales of mere selfishness, glory obsession and might = right. No, these people had substance; they were scared, depressed, full of inner conflict, at war with their own hearts and minds, mortals needing hope and encouragement to embolden them to become conquerors.
Who does that remind you of? You and I, friend. It’s gritty truth about how humans transform from butter mode to battle mode. Scared, depressed, numb, inflicted with inner opposition, beat down; so they were, so we are. They changed into conquerors…, will you?
In fact, often times people try to claim certain events couldn’t have happened because, some reason, we humans don’t cross over to the extreme as far as these characters do in the stories. But actually, that is defied, scientifically. Every year’s issue of world records absolutely blows a hole through that argument. For example, you’re told that you’ll die after four days without water, but is this true?
It might happen to somebody, or it might have happened to someone at some point in history. But if we're being factual, the facts are that the world record for longest duration without water is 17 days. I have no doubt many have got close to that number trying to get the high score.
Don’t listen to people trying to tell you what your limits are, they are just spitting out propaganda. The very purpose for the athlete as a profession is to defy the known limits of the human body, and these people are admired for doing it. We prize them and honor them for accomplishing this, and the health industry won’t speak against them out of fear of the crowd, and yet, they constantly warn you not to be like them. It’s up to you who to listen to, but just remember, no guts no glory.
Talking to Gods on Mount Olympus
Go onto any internet body building or fitness community forum and peruse around a bit, it won’t take long and you’ll see what I saw in any one of those communities. Those communities can teach you a lot, way more than just the obvious stuff you assume, like body building.
There are lessons to learn about the differences between gods and men, between soul and muscle. Why? Because you stumbled upon Mount Olympus on earth, and you, mere mortal, entered the domain of gods. Many out of shape people already know this, that’s why they go on those forums and beg for help. They petition the gods for help to change their life and plead for the secret to immortality. How do the gods answer?
Every time, without fail, the gods answer with utter disdain for the wee mortal. Their thundering voices strike, “Do the work, get it done!” This is so very similar to my old answer to people, “Eat like a supermodel, workout like an athlete.” The difference between them and me, was that I was testing the person to see if I should help them, the gods on the other hand, truly, don’t know how to help.
Most of them were born gods, they are extreme and forceful beings by nature. They don’t let things get in their way, they beat down whatever obstructs their path. Battle mode is their default and their narcissism never lets them stop warring on in their battles for glory.
These gods can’t help the weak, because they don’t understand the process of going from weak to strong, from mortal to immortal. They answer the way they do because that is exactly what those gods did, they just did the work and got it done. Of course they could do that, unlike you, they have supernatural powers, as all gods do. But you, a mere mortal, how could you, oh most unfavored of the gods, expect to take on titans?
In the stories, the mortals must acquire supernatural abilities from some source, only then can they take on foes beyond imagination. You need to hunt out supernatural powers like the gods have, then you can attain the same god status, young Hercules. You need to start with battle mode.
Battle mode is the beginning, where you wander out of the monotony of the physical to enter the realm of metaphysical light and dark forces. The gods of this world rule our physical world from the glorious metaphysical Mount Olympus, using their godly abilities to materialize for themselves physical bodies so shredded and buff that lesser men take pictures of them as their shape glistens in baby oil.
Alright, so we’re going to leave Pegasus for later, we want battle mode first. How do we get it? The Sith got one thing right, hatred makes you stronger. We need to get you pissed off, super, insanely enraged. At…? You!
Everybody is talking about positive psychology these days, like the Spock fiasco, good luck with that experiment. Let them talk about it, that’s cool, but I’m not. Positive thinking is useful for being with eating disorders in the opposite extreme. If you weigh around eighty pounds and feel like you’re fat, okay, it’s time for some healthful love.
That is the right time for positive thinking, but positive thinking isn’t an all-purpose technique. The harsh reality is that if you are obese, in large part (pun not intended but quite enjoyed), you lack character. You are weak, you have chosen to be weak, it is indeed your fault, and you need to recognize this fact if you want to be anything more than pathetic.
Self-hate can be dangerous, but there is a type of self-disdain that is healthy, it is called shame, and it is to be prized. Every time I made great progress I was fueled by just such a type of shame. I was disgusted with myself, and it fueled me to change for the better, to build character and act powerfully.
Vision is a funny thing, its not just physical. When I’m not trying to lose weight I have a tendency to look at my naked body in the mirror, and while it may not be good looking, my vision finds the good. When I’m not in battle mode, when I’m in butter mode, looking in the mirror my eyes will be looking at a body that is actually less physically attractive than the one my eyes see in battle mode, yet my eyes find everything good it can.
In battle mode, I discovered that my eyes give attention to what needs to change. I call this True Sight. When my mentality switches from the happy-go-lucky adipose banker to the enraged push-up warrior, its anything but positive psychology, but it is productive, forward moving, healthful psychology.
If you are thinking to yourself: this guy is so dumb he doesn’t realize he means to say ‘self-esteem’… I want you to go sit in the corner right now..., ten minutes!
That’s absolutely, positively not what I am talking about. I’m talking about the little, crazy, completely nonsensical voice in your head that tells you, despite the fact that you have seen countless other people fail, that it won’t happen to you. Most of the time this is a bad, stupid voice and you shouldn’t listen to it. But not when you’re in butter mode trying to get into battle mode. You need this irrational voice, you need it like the world needs Batman to stop needlessly straining his voice in movies… it just makes things awkward for all of us.
This wildly illogical voice, that thinks you’re the only one in the world that can’t or shouldn’t face the consequences of your ridiculously stupid decisions is the first step to enormous power. It was my start into battle mode. I was morbidly obese, but that idiotic voice kept lying to me (which it does a lot in butter mode), telling me that one day you’ll turn everything around. But its just lying to make you feel better and allow you to keep on doing what you’ll regret later.
Then, one day, I visualized two futures, one obese, and another one as a god. My narcissistic inner monologue would not put up with the first future and it said to me, “Not to me. I’m better than that.” And then I went on my quest for greatness, to the black edges of the map to battle sea monsters and seduce bird-women.
Embrace that good form of narcissism, get that same voice talking in your head, and don’t let it tell you a lie. How do we know if the voice is lying to us? Promises for tomorrow are lies, if you’re not willing to do something today you won’t be willing to do it tomorrow, and if you aren’t acting strong now, you won’t act strong tomorrow. When the voice talks about now, it’s not lying to you, its ready for battle.
Coolness is a fascinating concept, and an even more fascinating tool for getting yourself into battle mode. What exactly is coolness? Coolness is a simple idea of someone or something having good style or admirable aspects.
Cars are cool and even, oddly, sexy. We can connect strange feelings to things sometimes, but one thing we know for sure, coolness is powerful. People go far out of their way for the mere idea of obtaining this alluring essence.
If you master this bizarre essence, you can do almost anything you want. Don’t believe me? Ugly, wimpy-looking nerdy guys attract women way out of their league (by the truckloads), because they harnessed the power of coolness with music or some other method of obtaining popularity. The tobacco industry gets millions of people to give them a few dollars every day and sacrifice their health, all for the pitch that they'll be cool.
When we don’t want to work hard to improve ourselves we make excuses, we want others to understand us, we want a greater power to fix it for us. When we are disgusted with ourselves, we get hungry, a good hunger.
That hunger doesn’t lead to chilly-cheese fries, it leads to hope, faith, endurance, future. You can see a positive future, a solution, but you know it means effort. When you’re hungry enough for that potential reality, you’ll put out that effort.
How can you make yourself that hungry? Healthy hatred. It’s okay to hate sometimes. It’s healthy to hate the Devil, soy substitutes, redundant reality TV shows and occasionally yourself when you’re being totally lame. Your self-disdain creates a powerful energy inside you that can build momentum. You need this, feel it, build that fire and fuel that thinking.
This self-rejection is not the same as depressed thoughts that lead to sluggish behavior or emotional eating. Its the spiritual side of you rejecting the flesh-enslaved side of you. Your mind is judging your heart, and it hates what it sees in it. When this happens the incredible force of our will takes action and you act with impressive power.
Now that’s the kind of battle mentality that wins wars. Now you’re a hungry lion, you’re so hungry, and when a lion gets hungry nothing gets in the way of what it wants. You need that kind of hunger, for a vision, a prospect you can imagine obtaining in your mind. As long as you don’t have that vision, you don’t have hope, faith or endurance for a future. You need an aim, you need it bad.
People will do a lot for the sake of personal identity. Take a very good look at your life and who you see yourself to be. Do you like it, truly? If you’re winning the game of adipose monopoly, you shouldn’t. The spiritual side of you is still struggling its way out of the fat suit and isn’t making any appearances.
The spiritual side of you is better than the material side of you, and while you have both sides to you, you are the one that you choose to be primary. The material side of you cares about sex and donuts, and sadly donuts more than sex. But the spiritual side of you values such things as kindness, strength, honor. You choose to be knight or slob. Spirituality produces goodness, materialism produces poop.
From this very second, yeah, this second, not the next one or five minutes from now, choose to be the spiritual dude. That person is cool, everybody wants to invite that guy over for mojitos and brunch. Does anyone want to invite the dude or dudette that picks donuts over sex? Of course not, that’s just pitiful. Choose the sex over the donut and one day, someone will choose you over the donut too.
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