Row the boat

Good morning

I wanted to share an analogy for body composition that a new client and I hashed out last week.

This weeks theme seems to be water...

Maintaining body composition is similar to sitting in a boat with a creek’s gentle current slowly carrying you downstream.

Picture this: it’s Sunday afternoon, 27 degrees, and there’s not a cloud in the sky. It’s the perfect day to be on the water, so you jump into your car and take your little row boat down to the creek.

You park the car and launch your boat into the gentle current.

It doesn’t take too much effort to move up or down the creek - just a few paddles in either direction. 

If you sit back and relax for little while you will get pulled down the stream. But it won’t be far and you can easily row yourself back to your entry point.

If you relax for a while longer, you’ll be refreshed, but it’s a bit more work to get back to where you started. 

Maybe you don’t really want to row back that far, so you get a bit upset at yourself for not paying attention, but then you row back anyway.

If you get comfortable and fall asleep for a few hours, there’s a few hours worth of paddling required to get you back.

This can seem overwhelming - you’ve never paddled that far and you don’t want to do it. You start regretting falling asleep. 

Then you begin to tell yourself a new story.

If only work wasn’t so busy lately, you wouldn’t have seen so tired and this would have never of happened!

Meanwhile, you continue gently floating down the stream - away from where you want to return to.

There are two key takeaways:

  • If you aren’t doing something, you are moving away from your goals, not maintaining. Maintenance requires work.
  • Row the boat if:
    • You want to maintain where you are
    • You are a little bit off
    • You are a long way off.


Did that analogy make sense?

I know some of my previous analogies belong in ship creek, so it's always good to know which ones are useful.

Tom Fitzgerald