People that we trained in this strategy, we told them to focus their attention on the finish line, to avoid looking around, to imagine a spotlight was shining on that goal, and that everything around it was blurry and perhaps difficult to see. ... We compared this group to a baseline group. To this group we said, just look around the environment as you naturally would. You will notice the finish line, but you might also notice the garbage can off to the right, or the people and the lamp post off to the left. ... So the big question, then: Did keeping your eyes on the prize and narrowly focusing on the finish line change their experience of the exercise? It did.
So, as a first step to testing these questions, we gathered objective measurements of individuals' physical fitness. We measured the circumference of their waist, compared to the circumference of their hips. A higher waist-to-hip ratio is an indicator of being less physically fit than a lower waist-to-hip ratio.
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