Mind, Stress And Performance


Are You Ready To Train Today?

Once you get into weightlifting, you become addicted to it. Once your body starts changing and you become fitter, leaner, stronger and more powerful, you feel on top of the world. Everything seems possible. You are happy, relaxed, feel good about yourself and everything is falling into place.

You are finally achieving the fitness goals you have always dreamed of. It’s logical then that you say: I have to keep going I can’t stop now! Naturally then, you keep going and even, start doing more: going further, pushing yourself harder and trying to spend as much time as you possibly can in the gym. All this excitement, happiness and ‘kick’ you get from going to the gym and getting results can sometimes get us to overlook one important aspect in your fitness journey: the mind and it’s contribution in your progress. As much as we all love hitting new records, getting to the gym and not failing, the role of your mind in all of this is something important to consider in your journey.

A Stressed Mind, Less Performance

I am sure you have all came across the situation where your body feels like it’s ready to train, but your mind doesn’t? Physically, you feel great. No aches or pains and your body is ready for its next challenge. Time to crack open some new PRs! But wait, you get to the gym and secretly you have other things on your mind. Maybe you’re thinking about work, an upcoming exam or, you have tons of important things you need to arrange for the day ahead. But you go to the gym anyways and push through it. You say to yourself: if my body is physically ok, then I am good to go. However, to your surprise you find out that your training session doesn’t go to plan, no PRs are made and everything feels harder and heavier than your last session. Why? My body feels fine! Surely that can’t be right?

“Your body feels like it’s ready to train, but your mind doesn’t”.

Believe it or not, if your mind is not recovered, fresh or focused on the training session ahead then it’s difficult to make progress. It’s true! The mind is a huge overlooked factor when it comes to achieving your fitness goals. But guess what? It’s so powerful in allowing you to achieve them. Which is why, when it comes to realizing your true potential in the gym, not only does your body need to be in tip top form, but your mind also. I have experienced this many times. You body feels great, recovered and energized, but secretly, you have lots on your mind. So what do you do? You try to fight through it by pushing it all to the back of your head for the upcoming training session. But, it still doesn’t make a difference. You just can’t seem to beat the highs of your last session. Very frustrating! But we all have experienced this. If something pops up, is on my mind or, I am mentally stressed out, an awesome training session just doesn’t happen. No matter what I do!

“The mind is a huge overlooked factor when it comes to achieving your fitness goals.”

Even if you try to push everything to the back of your head, it still doesn’t lead to a recovered, fresh mind. Your mind is overloaded with so much stuff that it can’t prepare you properly for your training session. Your mind is what’s going to give you focus and drive during your workouts. Your mind is going to be responsible for pushing you past barriers. Your mind is going to be responsible for telling you: you can do this; nothing can stand in your way today! Without your mind’s ability to allow any of this, it becomes very difficult to continuously push yourself past new challenges. Not only that, it costs so much extra mental energy if you are constantly worrying about a ton of other stuff. This energy is so valuable and needed during workouts if you are to overcome successfully every challenge in your way to ultimate success. Your body is the mechanism that lifts weight, but your mind is the energy source that enables your body to do this. If your mind is overrun with extra stress, your body is going to have less energy to be able to drive you closer towards your goals.

Train When You Are Ready To Train, Not Because It’s Planned

As always, if you want to gain quality size and strength over the long-term, then you need to be doing more work over time. More work, means new challenges for your body to overcome. If you can’t perform more work over time, then you simply won’t force your body to undergo the whole adaptation process. Without adaptation, your body won’t be forced to become stronger and bigger over time. This is exactly your aim for every training session: to induce adaptation. Making progress is not just about saying: I managed to get to the gym today! It’s about saying: I went to the gym today and I did better than last time. It doesn’t matter how much better, if you made progress, then you made it one step closer to your goals.


This is why; if you feel stressed, have other things on your mind, take the day off the gym. Allow your mind to recover and clear itself. Don’t try to push it to the back of your head just because you have a planned gym day. It really is ok to move this session to another day when your mind is much clearer. Why? Simply because a clearer mind will ensure you perform at your best when you do train. That is what matters when it comes to making long-term progress.

If you have any questions about the article or would like to discuss further some of the topics mentioned, then please feel free to leave comments down below! 


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