Chase performance and the aesthetics will follow. Focus your goals around your skills, your strength, your performance, not the way you look or the number on the scale. Like many people, I began my fitness journey because I hated my body. For most of my life, my focus was on changing my appearance. Up until a year ago, that changed, and wouldn't you know, I've not only made the most progress in the gym, but my body has changed more in a year than it has over the last 6 years combined.
DOING RANDOM WORKOUTS.
Any workout is better than no workout, no doubt. However, random workouts from IG, constantly switching up exercises, and not paying attention to yourreps, sets, and weights is not optimal if your goal is to get stronger and improve your performance. Proper programming has made the biggest impact on my fitness and physique.
HAVING A 'MORE IS BETTER' ATTITUDE WITH EXERCISE.
What you can tolerate and what is optimal for you are two different things. I went from exercising for the sake of burning calories 7 days a week to training 3-4 days a week. 3-4 solid lifts > 7 mediocre workouts. I'm able to give my all to my lifts when I allow myself to rest and recover. Not only my body, but also my mind.
HAVING A RESTRICTION MINDSET WITH FOOD.
I'd be so neurotic with my eating habits that by time the weekend or a special event rolled around, my sense of control would vanish. I'd then overdo it to the point where I'd feel guilty and let it influence my self-worth. With a more relaxed approach, I don't feel restricted and therefore rarely feel the urge to overeat or overdo the treats. Not to mention YOU NEED FOOD TO GROW!
TRYING TO BE THE SMALLEST VERSION OF MYSELF.
As if weighing 10 pounds less would magically make me happy and satisfied with my body and all my problems would disappear. I was obsessed with wanting to be the smallest, leanest version of myself. I let go of the idea that the less I weighed, the better.
RELYING ON EXTERNAL VALIDATION TO FEEL GOOD.
I place way too much of my value as human being and self-worth in my appearance. This is something I'm working on it in therapy. Lifting weights gives me the biggest sense of accomplishment and purpose. It has transformed me into a very confident woman, something I've lacked for the first 24 years of my life. To be at peace, I deeply need to believe in myself without the influence of others.
AIMING FOR PERFECTION.
The excessive expectation to be perfect day after day with your diet and exercise is a slippery slope to failure. Your progress is dependent on what you do most of the time, the accumulation of healthy choices each day, week, month, and year. This is sustainability.