Weight Loss Wisdom from the St. Louis Cardinals’ Closer Jason Motte

by Suzy Oge on October 22, 2012

Jason Motte, the star closer for the St. Louis Cardinals only pitches in the ninth inning, one inning, never more. Except Game 3 of the NL Championship Series vs.the Giants when he was brought in following a 3 1/2 hour rain delay in the 8th inning to close out the game. If you don’t follow baseball, this sounds like no big deal, but the relief pitcher rotation is down to a science with a lot of superstition thrown in too. (Here are 12 strange baseball superstitions, because 13 would be so unlucky.) So, you can imagine that the TV Broadcaster made a big deal of this deviation in a post-game interview with Motte. When asked how he coped with the extraordinary task of going in earlier than usual to save the game and pitch twice as long as he ever does; Motte responded with a pearl of wisdom. I did what we pitchers always do…we go in and just try to get the first guy out. He repeated this for impact… just go get that first guy out!

Jason Motte’ message is simple, but his wisdom on staying focused could help you pitch your way out of any situation. It is so easy to get caught up in the enormity of what you are trying to accomplish and end up feeling overwhelmed. The thought of ever actually reaching your fitness goal or sticking to your nutrition plan for all or eternity might seem like too big of a challenge, so why even bother starting. You are bound to fail sometime along this long hard road, so is it really worth making an effort? Please don’t go there! This kind of negative thinking gets you nowhere.

Instead, focus on each day and take it one meal, one workout, one rep at a time. The real secret to weight loss success is to make habits and rituals out of what does work and what does lead you to success. So take Motte’s words even more to heart  and get that first out immediately when you wake up. How? Be prepared the night before; know what you are going to eat and have what you need on hand, select your workout clothes to either put on first thing in the morning or pack your gym bag for after work.

You always hear that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, (here is a link to a great recent article on Breakfast Breakthroughs and why oatmeal isn’t the best choice), but in addition to fuelling your body in the most effective way, eating the right breakfast gives you a big psychological win too. Your day starts off  in the right way and if you can knock out your workout in the morning too, you’ll feel like you’ve already got 2 outs in the bottom of the ninth! (If any non-baseball person has stuck with me this far, it means you’re on the verge of winning!)  When you are winning it is easier to stay on track for the rest of the day! Then wake up and do it again the next day!

While I’m not suggesting that you adopt the most bizarre baseball rituals like not washing your workout gear for a while after crushing a lifting or sprinting PR,  baseball players are great role models in turning behaviors into habits.  Now if only the Yankees would offer you a multi-million dollar contract to stick to your diet, that would be a sweet deal! :-)

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