When the day came that my size 36 jeans became too uncomfortable, I reached something of a breaking point. I knew that I had to do something, but I still lacked the real motivation and inspiration to do anything about it. Each day, I became more depressed with the way I looked, resigned to the fact that this was how I was going to be. I "knew" that I would never commit to an exercise program, and that dieting alone would not be enough even if I had the will power to stick with it.

What a difference a day can make?

My life completely changed one day in mid-February of this year when I found out about the Body-for-Life program, just one of the many "physique transformation" programs available. Following a link to the Body-for-Life web site (http://www.bodyforlife.com), I was presented with unbelievable before and after pictures of people who had undergone incredible physique transformations in as little as 12 weeks. Only 12 weeks? The pictures were incredible! Guys whose "before" pictures looked like me had completely transformed their bodies. They looked like something from a fitness magazine. It blew me away that 12 weeks prior to those pictures, they looked what appeared to be years away from bodies like that.

For the first time in my life, I felt a glimmer of hope that perhaps there was something I could do about the way I looked. But more than losing a few pounds, I saw the opportunity to be in the best shape of my life. Surely I could stick with a program for 12 weeks! Something shifted in me. I felt a commitment to doing this program that rivaled the commitment to my marriage! I made the all-important decision to stick to this program and get results no matter what!

What made the difference? Why did this particular program make me feel in a way about exercise that nothing else in my life had ever done before? I suppose it was the fact that for the first time, I saw real possibility for myself. If the people in those pictures could do it, then maybe I really could!

Over the course of the next 12 weeks I became nearly obsessed with my success on the program. I was on a very specific diet, and never once did I stray off of it, though previously, I had never been able to show such willpower for an extended amount of time. I never missed a workout, and I educated myself continuously on weight training and nutrition. The entire program had become an integrity issue. I simply could not stray off the path I had laid out for myself.

I was clearly NOT the same person. The "old" Bob Doyle would have no more read an article in a fitness magazine then he would have jumped in front of a speeding truck. Now, however, I find myself looking at this business of physique transformation from all different angles, and it has been quite a ride! For every theory out there, there is an opposing one, and it can get quite confusing. The reality, however, is that there are many programs that produce great results. You just have to find one that inspires you sufficiently. This is the only way you stand a chance of completing your transformation successfully.

By the end of the 12 weeks of the program, I had lost 33 pounds of fat and gained 7 pounds of muscle. My "after" pictures amazed even me. Although I did not look like a magazine cover model, I was happy with my progress. I had changed my body, but so much more. I quickly learned that the "inner" transformation is really what the process was all about. Your body is often a reflection of who you have become on this inside. When the person on the inside changes, it is just a matter of time before the person on the outside begins to display these changes to the world. More positive inner thought processes on my part resulted in action that created a more positive physical representation of the person I was becoming. I learned discipline, integrity, humility, commitment, and so much more as a result of this "diet and exercise" program. You see it was not about the program. It was about the transformation.

Most importantly, I learned that being in outstanding physical condition is something that is truly accessible to anyone who really wants it. It has become something of a mission for me to let everyone know that weight training isn't just professionals, and that no matter what you think is true about you now, that your possibilities are limitless. You only need the inspiration to get started, the motivation to continue, and the information on how to do it. This truly is something to think about. For years I saw pictures of people in great physical shape and "knew" that I would never ever achieve a look like theirs. I "knew" that I hated working out and had no real dietary discipline. It turns out that every one of those negative thoughts had been lies I had told myself for years and years. Negative self-image, negative physique. Garbage in, garbage out.

Inspiration and motivation are crucial to a proper start. Knowing why you want your results, and reminding yourself of your reasons every day can be THE deciding factor as to whether or not you stay on your program. There is no shortage of motivation and inspiration if you know where to look. You have friends and family who will encourage your efforts. One can also benefit from reading stories of the successes of others. Great inspiration can come from looking at before and after pictures of others that have successfully completed such transformations. If you are Internet-active, your choices are mind-boggling! There is no shortage of information available online, and there are some sites that are in existence solely to help keep individuals supported and on-track with their program, whatever it may be.

One such site is BodyChangers (http://www.bodychangers.com), which not only features before and after pictures, but also allows the visitor to hear 15-20 minute interviews with those featured on the site. The participants are all "ordinary" people - not professional bodybuilders. In the interviews, they discuss exactly what they did to achieve their results, what they ate, how they trained, how they stayed motivated and how they overcame the inevitable obstacles.

I specifically mention BodyChangers because it is a product of my own inner transformation and subsequent desire to share my success with others in the most productive way possible. BodyChangers has nothing to sell and is not affiliated with any particular exercise program or nutritional supplement manufacturer. It is our goal to allow anyone who has the desire to share their transformation story, a forum in which they can most effectively communicate what they have learned. This desire is something that I have found prevalent in many of the interviews I've conducted. Most who undergo physique transformations feel drawn to help others do the same.

It really doesn't matter where the motivation comes from, but if you don't have it, you soon lose the drive to do the hard work, and the results never come.

Others have the motivation, but they don't have the proper information about what really gets results. This would account for the skepticism that can occur when some people look at before and after pictures, doubting the results. After all, if they themselves have been working out for six years and have not seen similar results, why should they believe that these pictures represent only twelve weeks of training? Just a few key pieces of information about nutrition and proper exercise form can make all the difference your training. Six years of doing everything wrong cannot compete with twelve weeks of doing everything right, and the proof is in the results.

If you have ever aspired to physical excellence, it is time for you to know that it can be achieved, if you truly have a burning desire. You need only to assess the reasons you want to change, realize fully what your life is missing by being in poor condition, set specific goals, educate yourself, find a proven program, and never, ever quit. In time, you will realize that people are only "ordinary" if they allow themselves to be, and that we can all achieve levels of excellence far beyond what we may consider possible.

Author's Bio: 

Bob Doyle is the creator of the BodyChangers web site, which
features audio interviews with people who have successfully made physique
transformations using any of a variety of programs. The site can be
found at http://www.bodychangers.com, and is free to both visitors and