Once you’ve decided to start exercising and clean up your diet, may I suggest the next step should be to find a fitness role model? If you could design your body, what would it look like? This question sometimes throws people off. They think they need to just lose 10 pounds when the reality is they are 30 pounds overweight. Small weight loss, small goal, and a small chance of succeeding.

Goals should be compelling. Once you trivialize your fitness objectives you are setting yourself up for failure. Every week for decades now, Oprah has told her followers how to easily lose 10 pounds. But the audience never learns. Their conscious mind grasps the easy. However, their subconscious mind realizes that a 10-pound weight loss isn’t going to take the dieter from flab to fab. So it works to sabotage the dieter’s efforts.

Conscious Mind: I only need to lose 10 pounds.
Subconscious Mind: Then you should only have 1 slice of cheesecake girlfriend.

How much should you weigh? What body fat percent would you like? You may think you know these answers, but most people are clueless. My solution is to find a fitness role model. You need photos of your after photo to inspire you and convince your subconscious mind that your goals are meaningful.

Since you usually can’t take photos of strangers, I’m advising picking a celebrity or athlete as your fitness role model. The role model needs to be realistic. Here are the criteria you should use in picking a fitness role model.

1: Same Sex – This should be obvious.

2: Same Height – Visit CelebHeights.com or Yahoo! Sports for this data.

3: Similar Age – The photos should be within a decade of your current age.

4: Body Type – Are you lanky (ectomorph) or stocky (endomorph)? Pick appropriately.

I have 2 fitness role models: boxer Evander Holyfield and surfer Laird Hamilton. Here are the numbers.

Height Weight Body Type
MAS (me) 6 ft 2.5 210 Ectomorph
Evander Holyfield 6 ft 2.5 215-220 Meso/Ectomorph
Laird Hamilton 6 ft 3 215 Ectomorph

Once you have your role models, find photos. Look at them and look at yourself. Now hit the gym!

Who are your fitness role models?