Meet the Irish Instagram adventurer and life coach on a mission to help people achieve their goals
Kildare Instagram adventurer and life coach Aaron Travels has been non-stop using social media to spread positivity.
Over his travels, Aaron made headlines for completing a 2,600km three-month bike ride around Wild Atlantic Way from Donegal to Cork, a journey he completed without any accommodation along the way.
Aaron has also undertaken the monumental feat of cycling from Ireland to Greece all by himself for charity, and most recently completed his first mountain marathon by hiking 42km from Tallaght to Shankill through the Dublin mountains, among a list of other adventures.
Now, Aaron has become a life coach to “help people create a life that they want to live, one that’s fulfilling and meaningful to them” as they embark on their personal journeys.
The Irish Mirror chatted with Aaron about some top tips to stay fit, healthy and active in the face of adversity when trying to stay focused to achieve a goal in the hopes of helping others who may be struggling to reach their personal goals.
It can often be hard to stay motivated, what is your advice on forming a habit and sticking to it?
Aaron explained that when it comes to motivating yourself, rather than waiting for “some magic inspiration to come along”, the best thing is to just get going.
“The funny thing is motivation, it’s not always there,” Aaron told the Irish Mirror.
“The issue is we wait for motivation to come. On the days that we don’t feel the motivation, they are the days we choose not to go to the gym, we wait around, ‘Where’s the motivation, I don’t have it.’ So I’m going to stay at home.
“It’s not really about waiting to feel motivated, it’s actually just going while you don’t feel one bit motivated, if you realise that that the motivation is not going to come and you just have to go to the gym not feeling motivated at all, then you can slightly change your perspective and realise I’m going to go to the gym feeling like crap.
“I’m not going to feel good. And then go to the gym, I’m going to go to the gym feeling like crap. And then I’ll probably walk out feeling a lot better. And trust me you do.”
“It’s bringing all the crap with you, bringing all the negativity or the demotivation with you through the doors and just going instead of waiting for some magic inspiration to come along.”
Many people struggle with a routine, how do you get into the swing of one and stick to it?
When it comes to building a routine, Aaron says forming habits over a period of time, starting small and building up.
“I think everyone nowadays, especially with how popular self-help is, we all just fantasise over the idea of routine, it seems so important to us,” the Kildare adventurer said.
“It can be, but I think as well, we expect too much of ourselves and put too much pressure on ourselves. So again, you have to zoom out and look at the big picture.
“Anyone who would be essentially struggling with a routine, is someone who’s putting too much pressure on themselves to complete too many tasks, ‘I want this routine where I wake up at 5am and I go to bed at 8pm and in between, I do these 10 different goals.’
“You need to look at your life as this work in progress, where maybe in five or 10 years time you will be in this incredible routine because you’ve built in these habits because routine is also habit.
“You need to build habits and habits take at least 60 days to form. So you can’t expect to say, Okay, I’m going to start 10 new habits tomorrow, and I’m going to be in full swing in a week’s time. That’s like 600 days of work that you’re expected to do by next week.
“It’s you against the brain. I would say you’ve got to start small and get rid of unrealistic expectations.
“I would say pick one thing, pick two things max, and do it for two, or three months. Maybe you can’t make the gym every day in a week, but you’re gonna at least go three times, you can do that for the three months you’ve built in your mind, and now you’ve got a new habit.
“You got to put yourself in for the long term. That’s what it is. Start small, build it up, and take it easy on yourself.”
Many people may find it hard to get the initial push going, what is your advice to people finding it hard to get started on their goals?
When it comes to getting going on completing a goal, Aaron says that weighing up the pros and cons can be the best way to start on a goal.
“50% is mental. Sometimes you’re just ready, and sometimes you’re not. At some point, you’d hope, there’ll be a push just to get you up and go,” he explained.
“In terms of practical methods, you could sit down and essentially just write out the pros and the cons, ‘Where will I be if I start now versus if I don’t start or if I start next year’.
“There’s a massive difference between making that move that scares you now, or is difficult now versus if you start that in two years’ time.
“So weighing up the pros and the cons, For me, I can’t live the other way. Look at your life, if you were to stay the same, you know, you’re already unhappy with it.
“Everyone wants to change and change is natural. So face yourself with not changing and face yourself with how you can change. Then again, it’s just small steps, just little implementations.”
How can staying active promote positive mental health?
Staying active can be hard, but it can do wonders for your confidence and self-esteem, Aaron explained that any type of fitness is “telling yourself you love yourself.”
“I just know for myself, pushing myself to get out in all types of weather. It’s a big thing, for your own confidence or for your own self-esteem,” Aaron said.
“Again, you’re pushing yourself through something that you want but your mind resists. Your mind doesn’t really want to because it wants to stay stuck and then you resist change. It doesn’t want to change.
“I think for me, eventually, when I do push myself to do the things like fitness, getting outside, going to the gym, even my cold showers, it’s jumping in there, it’s doing it and afterwards just being like, ‘wow’, you feel good about yourself because you feel you feel accomplished something.
“You begin to build a relationship with yourself that you trust and that can be done through making yourself go to the gym, go first cycle, go for a jog.
“I think in terms of mental health, you’re starting to find comfort within yourself because you’re doing things for yourself.
“It’s kind of like you’re really showing yourself that you do love yourself. If you’re doing something positive action, any type of fitness you are without words or indirectly telling yourself you love yourself, so I think that is a good thing for your mental health.”
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