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First, we make our habits, then our habits make us.
– Charles C. Noble

It’s not unusual for intelligent people to get themselves stuck in a deep rut in life.  By rut, I mean a somewhat extended period flooded with low motivation, poor moods, negative thinking patterns, and little or no productivity.  A rut like this can be extremely difficult to get out of.  I’ve been there several times, so I know that rediscovering productivity and finding the motivation to delve into anything even remotely challenging can seem nearly impossible.  However, we must eventually come to our senses and realize that there’s no point in going through life feeling unmotivated, tired, stressed out, and unhealthy.  Misery is, after all, a CHOICE. 

Escaping the bounds of a deeply grooved rut requires nothing more than some willpower, a good plan, and the resolve to take immediate action.  Most ruts are caused by a lack of self-care, for example, little to no exercise, sub-par nutrition, zero personal reflection, insufficient sleep, etc.  Significant transformation can, and will, occur in a relatively short period of time if you act now and remain diligently focused on digging yourself out of the hole you’ve created. 

6-weeks should provide plenty of time for you a jump start.  Below are some helpful tips to get you started.  Make it your goal to gradually incorporate all these tips into your life over the course of this 6-week bootcamp. 

  • Get Naked and Face Reality – Remove all your clothing and then stand naked in front of a full-length mirror for 30 seconds.  Put your clothing back on and take the next two minutes to think about what you’ve just witnessed.  How do you feel?  Comfortable?  Disturbed?  Shocked?  If you felt anything other than comfortable, move on to the next step. 
  • Take Out the Trash – While holding a large garbage bag, rummage through your refrigerator and kitchen pantry and throw away anything that lists ‘high fructose corn syrup’ as an ingredient.  While you’re at it, throw away items that contain ‘partially hydrogenated’ anything.  This would include most packaged and processed foods such as cookies, chips, crackers, sodas, etc.   
  • Gather the Necessary Supplies – Now that you’re close to being out of food, grab a pencil and paper and begin making a new grocery list that includes the following items: oatmeal, eggs, chopped walnuts, fresh baby spinach, skinless chicken breasts, raw almonds, raisins, salmon fillets, whole wheat bread, canned tuna, unprocessed cheese, four vegetables of your choice, and three fruits of your choice.  Do your own research as to why I selected these foods and find other foods to add to your grocery list for the same reasons (Hint: protein, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, whole grains, and vitamins). Or just follow our meal plan. 
  • Put the Bottle Down – Cut your alcohol consumption by 50 percent.  If you drink one glass of wine every night of the week, drink one glass every other night instead.  If you drink a case of beer each week, cut your consumption down to two six-packs.  If you drink one bottle of whiskey per week, buy a smaller bottle.  It’s hard to be motivated or productive when you’re constantly buzzed or hung-over. 
  • Schedule a Long-Overdue Visit – When was the last time you saw your family physician?  Call your doctor and schedule a full physical examination.  Take every piece of advice that he or she gives you as the gospel and ask at least three specific questions related to your health.  Research any prescriptions that are written for you so that you understand what you are being asked to take and why.   
  • Fuel the Machine First – Make time to eat breakfast every day, it really doesn’t take that long.   
  • Look Beyond Yourself – Pray or meditate once a day for at least five minutes.  If this seems to calm your mind, increase the time from five to ten minutes or more. 
  • Expend Some Energy – Make a valid attempt to incorporate more physical activity into your daily routine.  Spend 20 minutes, two times per week performing some type of enjoyable physical activity.  Take the stairs at the office instead of the elevator.  Take the dog for a walk.  Walk to a co-worker’s desk instead of sending him an email.  Just get up and get moving! 
  • Recharge Your Mind and Body – Get at least seven hours of quality sleep per night this month.  By following the other suggestions above, restful sleep should come naturally.  Sleep is one of the most powerful ways to rejuvenate the mind and body, increase creativity, and replenish lost energy.


After this 6-week bootcamp has passed, take time to reflect on how you feel physically, mentally, and spiritually.  It’s likely that your rut will be replaced with a well-paved path leading to better health and a stronger sense of well-being. 


Remember, misery is a CHOICE.  Your daily habits can be either a host for misery or a host for happiness and positive change.  The choice is yours to make. No Mess 


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