Let me tell you a story
Several years ago I decided I was tired of having migraine headaches on a daily basis. Fearful of when and where I would get a headache. A friend gave me a copy of a book by Bill Phillips called, Body for Life. It changed my life literally. I devoured the book in one sitting. I read story after story of individuals and their reason for transforming their bodies. It showed before and after pictures over a 12 week period. I was stunned and even suggested to my friend that there was no way that type of change could happen over 12 weeks much less a year. He said, “What if it was true?” That comment stuck with me the rest of the day and evening. I woke up the next day and decided if it’s true I’m going find out.
I immediately went to a local fitness club and sought out a fitness coach named Bern Delacruz (that name was applicable to him) that had been highly recommended by Body for Life and had helped several people transform their health and bodies. I remember walking into this fitness club and asking to speak with Bern and feeling totally out of place. I had not been in a gym for over 15 years! I could not believe it had been that long. I was so athletic in high school and college and now I did not like what I was seeing in the mirror. Bern came out from a training session and I gulped seeing him. He had a radiant smile and a physique most people, at least men dream about possessing. I told him my story and said I wanted to hire him. He declined and said he was full and that he didn’t have any openings for at least a year. I said how about I pay you double. He smiled and kindly said he was sorry and would be glad to refer me. I said I only wanted the best because I was intent on making the necessary changes in my life to reclaim my health. We left it at that and I left feeling depressed.
An hour or so later Bern called and said, “Jeff, are you serious about changing your life?” I said absolutely I am. He said okay, I will create an opening as long as you agree to the terms. I said I will. He said well let me tell first tell you the terms.
Bern said if I would commit to the following terms he would be glad to get started. Here were his terms:
- Be at the gym every day Monday through Friday for a 90 minute workout and not miss unless I was dead. He was serious.
- Agree to a strict diet which would allow me one “free” meal a week where I could anything I want;
- Purchase several vitamins and health supplements that he would identify.
- Oh yes, one more thing, we will start each day at 4:00 AM!
On my first workout, Bern took my measurements and weight as well as a “before” picture of me holding a newspaper with the current date showing (see photo). It was embarrassing, I was totally out of shape. Bern then took a notecard booklet and as he talked to me he wrote out the outline for what we would be accomplishing over the next 12 weeks. He then introduced his wife, a nutritionist, and the fittest lady I had ever seen even to this day, who outlined my diet. My diet consisted of lots of proteins such as eggs, chicken, tuna and protein bars and shakes. I had a list of vegetables as well as carbs that I could accompany with my main meals through the day. They then provided me with written instructions on how to prepare my meals, the amount I would consume at each meal, and the time I would be eating. I was to carry a small cooler to work with five of the six meals I would have for each day and eat them at specific times during the day. They provided visualization for me by showing me their meals for that day that they had in their little cooler! They also told me if I cheated on any of my meals, the goal was to get back on track on the next meal. Each day Bern would ask if I had cheated on any of my meals, and there were times in the beginning that I had and I told him so. He never scolded me. We would just talk about why I cheated and we would get back to the goal and the reason I was there. The food was and still is the hardest thing for me to this day. I looked forward to every Saturday evening, that was my “free” meal to eat whatever I wanted — and I did!
Each workout was excruciating for the first 9 weeks. I had to mentally get my mind right and Bern was good at that. Early in the process, Bern required that I provide him with a photograph from the Body for Life book/magazine of a person I would like to look like physique wise and then he asked me what the benefits were for me by being fit and I had to write those down in my notebook. Each workout, we would begin with prayer and then Bern would ask if I had looked at that photograph in my notebook. Each day I said I did and he would smile and say good.
Each week Bern would take my weight as well as take measurements of my waist, neck, legs, and arms. This was to connect the dots of my journey. After 9 weeks, I did not see any major improvements physique wise. I was much more confident with my workouts but I was a little down about the results but thrilled that I had much more energy and confidence. My headaches were still recurring but not daily which I was thrilled about. Some days they were really bad and that caused me concern of if this was really going to work long term.
The magic began in week 10. I literally began to see my body transform. I was stunned to say the least! I had people at work commenting about how I looked and said I had a new spark about me and I looked great. I was pumped up (no pun intended). I was lifting weight in the gym that I never dreamed I would be doing. Each Friday Bern and I sat down following the workout (if I could walk!) and we would review where I started to where we were at and review the goal. My results at this time were unbelievable. I had started with 24 percent body fat and was down to 11% at week 10 and 9.8 on week 12. I had lost a ton of weight and replaced it with 25 pounds of muscle! If you saw my before and after shot over 12 weeks you would be stunned! Well you can see it sort of reluctantly, but I wanted you to see it was real.
Inbound Marketing Success
I told you this story because Inbound Marketing is very similar to life. There are times in our life where we get sick and tired of being sick and tired and we are ready to change. Change rarely takes place unless you get to this point and are ready to abandon what you know doesn’t work anymore. You don’t just dip your toe in and see how it goes. You can but it’s not real success, it’s hope. Not a good place to be.
There are some customers who start out with Inbound Marketing thinking it can’t be that hard. It is. They want it because they see hope. They want more leads, they want a sales process that works. They desire results. All good things. They forget though that it’s a long process that will not happen without a commitment to change. A commitment that involves being sick and tired of cold calling, of selling hard, of doing things that don’t work or don’t work very well. They may begin but the newness wears off after six months or so and they lose sight of what the goal is and they revert back to old habits which are much more comfortable. They forget where they started from and they lost sight of the hard work each and every day that it requires to get where they say they want to go. For that reason, they make a decision which gets them back in the rut of how they’ve always done things in the past. Even though in their heart they know it’s not a good way.
Getting Started with Inbound Marketing
If you can start the inbound marketing process with a realistic understanding of your current situation and focus on the goal and stay the course outlined by your inbound marketing agency you will reap great rewards. But it all starts with you. Can you stick to the process? Are you willing to transform yourself and think in a new way? If you can, you will watch your results compound over time. The key is sticking to the process, doing some real hard thinking, and applying your mind to the key essentials that allow you to grow your business and yourself and achieve results you’ve maybe only dreamed about.
Bern if you come across this article. Let me thank you again for the difference you’ve made in my life. I am grateful to you. Thank you.