There exists a dark side to the technology we cherish for solving so many of our daily problems:

It’s making us lazy.

With a connected world at our fingertips, we’ve gotten drunk off instant gratification. Rather than looking for the worthwhile path forward, many of us opt for the easy way out.

It’s not all bad news, though. Born from our desire for shortcuts in this technological age is a trend called “hacking” – looking for ways to achieve optimal results with minimal effort.

I liked this notion so much I built my whole Hack Your Fitness program around it.

The difference between laziness and hacking is discipline. Without it, the results you want will remain out of reach no matter what system you use or how many cleanses you attempt.

Discipline can be tough to wrangle, however. In this piece, I’ll help you become more disciplined so you can hack your way to fitness success instead of sputtering out before the finish line.

Settle in for the Long Haul

Even with Hack Your Fitness being as streamlined as possible for someone who wants six pack abs and single digit body fat, I must reiterate that my program isn’t a magic pill.

In fact, no program can solve your fitness problems overnight.

Anyone who tells you otherwise is part of the fitness marketing monster that preys on your laziness and will sell you snake oil in exchange for misplaced hope (and money).

It makes me sad to hear about people hunting for the secret sauce that will transform their fitness with little to no effort. Don’t waste your time or your cash!

If you want the body of your dreams, you are going to have to work for it.

(The other option is liposuction, which I DO NOT recommend!)

There is no such thing as overnight success. Achieving your fitness goals, whatever they may be, takes a lot of hard work, persistence, and dedication. It takes discipline.

Knowing that you’re in for the long haul, let’s look at some ways you can learn to accept slow progress in a world that moves at the speed of now.

Fall in Love with the Climb

Instant gratification has made us lazy by stripping away our work ethic.

In a few taps on your phone, you can have lunch delivered or book your next vacation. We live in an instantaneous world but fitness only hands out incremental results.

How do you reconcile that difference?

The answer is simple: You have to fall in love with the climb.

Mantras like “getting more for less” and “working smarter, not harder” don’t apply here.

Yes, we’re hackers, meaning we get results with minimal effort, but the effort you’ll be asked to give every day is tremendous. It will test your discipline on a daily basis.

Fat loss and new muscle growth won’t happen right away and you’ll be tempted to give up.

“I’m busting my ass,” you’ll tell yourself, “and not seeing any results. Why bother?”

Hang in there. Take little wins every day and stack them until the results start showing up.

The sooner you fall in love with the climb and start to enjoy the process, the sooner you will appreciate the hard work and rewards that come with it.

Once you stop obsessing with the end result and instead prioritize your fitness journey every day, you’ll reach the finish line sooner than you think because you weren’t focused on it.

Here are some practical ways you can channel discipline to stay focused during the climb.

Be a Professional, Not an Amateur

We know discipline is difficult to master, but here’s two bits of good news:

  • You can train to strengthen your discipline like you train to strengthen your muscles.
  • Because discipline is a habit, it gets easier the longer you practice it.

Let’s look at one of my favorite quotes and how you can use it to become more disciplined:

“Never give up what you want the most for what you want today.” – Neal Maxwell

If what you want the most is a shredded, six-pack look, don’t give that up for the short-term satisfaction you get from an extra hour of sleep, a slice of pizza, or drinks after work.

Temporary satisfaction is not worth the setbacks caused by indulgence.

Going to the gym, counting calories, tracking your macros, and intermittent fasting all require a high level of discipline and learning to block out distractions.

Indulging even once or twice can lead to a slippery slope of undisciplined behavior.

Look at it this way: How many Monday mornings have you woken up, taken a look at your to-do list, and considered all the excuses you could use to call in sick and stay in bed?

We all feel that way sometimes, but 99% of the time you suck it up and get your ass to work.

Why? Because you’re a professional.

Someone is paying you to show up every day and produce, and unlike the amateur, the professional shows up every day and puts in the work.

He doesn’t worry about how he’s feeling or wait to be inspired. He doesn’t always “feel like it.”

The professional knows there is no bargaining, that he has an obligation to his job and he doesn’t want to let his colleagues down.

If you approach fitness the same way – viewing yourself as a professional and not an amateur – I guarantee you’ll find a steady reserve of discipline and earn the results you seek.


  • Jay Kim

    Host of The Jay Kim Show

    Jay Kim is a full-time investor at host of the popular podcast The Jay Kim Show, Hong Kong’s first dedicated podcast on entrepreneurship and investing in Asia. Inc. Magazine has named The Jay Kim Show one of the top three podcasts from Asia which are inspirational and useful to entrepreneurs. Jay is an avid supporter of the start-up ecosystem in Asia and frequently consults with leaders in local government on topics related to technology, entrepreneurship, early-stage investing and startups.  Jay is also the founder of Hack Your Fitness the complete fitness & lifestyle solution for busy professionals and entrepreneurs. He works with world-class athletes and other high performers to help them achieve fitness results that are sustainable for life. Jay currently resides in Hong Kong with his wife Evelyn and three children Elena, Jaime and Julian.