Pushing Your Boundaries Higher
When it comes to gaining size and strength, losing fat and ultimately building a better body, you need to be prepared to put up a good fight. When I mean a fight, I mean a hard fight. In fact, your body is not really going to give you a choice when it comes down to it. You just have to say to yourself: I am ready for this! Truthfully, it’s going to be one tough ride. Your body is going to fight continuously with you in your journey, which means, you need to be prepared to push back, but only this time, HARDER and SMARTER.
When it comes to stimulating, changing and improving your body, it means forcing your body to adapt. But it will only adapt if it has good reason to. Adaptation costs time, energy and precious resources; precious resources that your body uses to maintain vital processes and functions 24/7. If it’s going to use some of these in the adaptation process, you need to give it a very good reason to do so. The only way to do that is to push it beyond it’s current capabilities, forcing it and giving it no other choice but to adapt so that it can survive the new challenges it’s faced with. But, that will require huge amounts of energy, dedication, motivation and perseverance on your side. It is the only way to force your body to undergo adaptation and to reap the fitness goals you desire.
Just Do It!
Lifting weights is going to feel weird to some people. It’s going to be a new feeling. You are going to sweat, you are going to feel your muscles working, you will feel tension, some strain, maybe burning sensations and tightness. This is all part of the size and strength development game. When I have trained with new people, I always here often the phrases ‘it feels a bit weird here; tight, tense’. Well, these weird feelings you have, they are completely normal! As long as you perform the exercises safe, efficiently and with good form, what you experience is all part of the lifting game. This is you pushing your body outside of its comfort zone and into new territory. But this is exactly what you want because then your body will forced to adjust and adapt to it. If you feel completely normal during your training session, do the same thing day in and day out and it’s EASY, then you give your body NO reason to divert precious energy and resources to adapt.
Moving Weight Vs. Lifting Weight
When it comes to forcing your body into the adaptation process (getting stronger and bigger), then you need to lift weight as opposed to just moving it around. You are probably reading this and thinking, yep major mind boggled: wait, what? What is the difference between moving and lifting weight? Well, moving weight is what I see people doing a lot of in the gym these days: simply walking in, doing a bunch of random exercises without any indication of structure or order to their routine, or, with the intent of trying to utilize more work on those exercises, in terms of more volume and intensity. There seems to be no pattern of progression or reason for the choice/order of exercises they select. They lift weight because it is simply there to be lifted. Typically, this becomes a sort of ‘a bit of this and a bit of that sort of training structure’. Lifting weight really is quite the opposite: you have a structure to your routine, with specific exercises that complement this and your goal is to progressively improve over time on these exercises. You are never stuck doing the same thing. Here, your goal is to make sure you are always challenging and pushing your body beyond its limits. You feel it and it’s difficult!
Too Much Talking, Not Enough Doing!
A gym is a place where you go to work, push yourself and achieve your fitness goals. That requires pinpoint focus, attention and dedication (just like anything in life!). Ok, there is nothing wrong with catching up with people you know in the gym BEFORE and AFTER your workout, but during your workout, you need to focus your energy where it’s ultimately needed most: your workout! Too often, I see many people using the gym for nothing more than a place to talk about daily life and what they go up to yesterday. Daily, I see people performing an exercise, and then go off for 15 minutes standing around chatting, come back, perform another exercise, then go off chatting again. While this may win you the award for the social butterfly of the gym, it’s not going to help you achieve your fitness goals! (And probably distract some others from theirs!) Yes, by all means catch up with people before or after your workouts, but during them, keep the mind set on your training. Plenty of time to catch up when you’re not working out!
One Hour Of Your Day To Truly Test Yourself
When I step into the gym, I always say to myself: I only have two hours, this is my time to shine, realize my true potential, and now to really push myself outside of my current boundaries. Fitness is not an easy task; it can be fun, but never easy if you are looking to make consistent, long-term progress. Progress requires pushing your body into the realm of adaptation, and that can only happen if you give your body a reason to. When you step into that gym, you need to be prepared to lift weight that challenges you, gets you to perform at a level that you are not used to and to ultimately leave tired, challenged and satisfied with the work you have today accomplished. As I always say: if you leave the gym in the same condition you entered, then you haven’t worked HARD or SMART enough. If this is you and you are not truly achieving all you want to achieve, then you really need to ask yourself: what’s truly stopping me from pushing myself outside my boundaries: is it poor training structure, not enough overload, too much socializing or, a combination of factors? Once you identify the gaps, then you have your answer and what you must do to move forward.