Have you ever found it hard actually getting to the gym? You have good intentions, and plan on waking up early and getting it done and gaining the muscle mass you long for, but you end up sleeping in, and just admit defeat, thinking you will never muster up the self-will to get in there.
It happens to us all. It’s hard sometimes to actually get into the gym, but there are some tips that can help you get by the excuses. I talk a lot about overcoming excuses on the podcast.
If planning to go in the morning set yourself up for success. Have your workout clothes laid out the night before, set your alarm and put your phone across the room so you have to actually get up and go get it. And go to bed at a decent time, don’t stay up late binging your favorite show when you know you are trying to get up early.
If you are planning to go after work, plan ahead. Pack your gym bag and have it in your car so that you don’t go home first and get distracted by something else.
Write down your why. Have your reason always in front of you, set it as your desktop background, tape it to your dash in your car, or on your bathroom mirror. You need to know why you want to get fit. Is it for health purposes? Longevity? To have more energy? For your kids? Your spouse? To have more self-esteem? Figure out your reason and hold onto that.
Remember there’s no excuse that can’t be overcome when it comes to gaining muscle. You can accomplish this, it’s just a matter of going for it and committing to get in the gym. You’ve got this.
It’s a question that beginners and experts have both asked. Why should I workout? Everyone has a different answer to this question, the important thing is that you have an answer.
Some are motivated by their family, kids, or significant other. Others are pushed by a drive to better themselves. Others may want to build confidence. Others may want to be strong. Whatever your reason for wanting to workout it’s yours. Hold tight to it.
If you don’t have your why then sit down and take some time to really ask yourself why. Grab a cup of coffee, tea, or whatever your comfort drink of choice is and get somewhere quiet. Grab a pen and paper or your tablet and start writing why you want to workout.
Make it real, make it personal. It’s yours.
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First off let me talk about exactly what a plateau is and isn’t, because often times a plateau can be mistaken for just a slow down in progress. I hear a lot of people say they’ve hit a plateau because they went a week or two and didn’t gain anything, lose any body fat, or increase their lifts. This is not a plateau. A couple weeks of no changes isn’t long enough to show that you’ve been in a plateau.
If you are hitting 6 weeks or more and nothing has changed, then you’ve probably hit a plateau. But fear not, because plateaus are not a form of doomsday.
When you hit a plateau it means that you are progressing. What once kicked your butt is no longer doing so, and in fact has become easy for you. This is good news! It means you’ve been progressing! So first off congrats. Don’t view it as a bad thing.
So now that you’ve hit it, what’s next?
You change things up. Try some new exercises, go for different set schemes. For instance if you’ve been doing three sets of twelve, try drop sets, or 5×5’s. Spend an extra 15 minutes on your workout each day. Add extra exercises in each day, add or subtract 150 more calories from your nutrition goal.
You don’t have to make huge changes to push past plateau’s your body just needs a change. So don’t fear plateaus. Embrace it and know that you are progressing, change things up and go hard. You’ve got this!
Check out this week’s podcast for more on plateaus and getting past fail points.
When it comes to making changes with our physique and gaining muscle our mind immediately goes to the end result. What we want to look like, how we want to feel etc. This is good because we need those goals cemented in our minds in order to make forward progress and remember where we want to be.
But just the same, it can get frustrating when we aren’t seeing the results we want to see. I’ve worked with different people who all have different goals and I can tell you the ones that have reached their goals or are close to reaching them are the ones that kept going despite not seeing progress some weeks or months.
You don’t always see the progress. Darren Hardy wrote an amazing book called the compound effect that talks about how small changes done every day add up to huge changes a year or more down the road.
When you start working out and eating healthy you won’t see immediate change, this is NORMAL. Keep making the hard and small every day decisions, to eat that healthy meal, to make it to the gym, and change will come.