Friday, January 23, 2009
Your Wake-Up Call
This was originally written for www.precisionnutrition.com and pulled out of the archives. Hell, I think I even inspired myself to get out of my chair and do some burpees or something.
"Nothing worth gaining was ever gained without effort." (Theodore Roosevelt)
Want to know how to get the most out of yourself with this coaching program? Here's how:
No Lying to Yourself or Others - this is your goal, your life, your health and your body. So by lying, cheating or distorting reality, you only cheat yourself.
It's all about YOU - Yes, you have amazing support systems in place right here on PN and some around you via friends and family etc... but when all is said and done, your ONLY true ally in this Lean Eating Program is YOU. You HAVE to be able to do this alone if everyone else turns on you. Accept that now and you WILL do this and emerge on the other side a completely different person.
NO EXCUSES!!! - As a strength coach, I hear them every day and they make me sick to my stomach. If you want more info on this, go to my Team Blog and read "What Rationalizations Hold You Back?"
Perception is Reality - You need to set your mind up for this. Yes, prepare your cupboards, your fridge, your schedule, your equipment, your spouse, friends and family BUT if you do not FIRST prepare yourself mentally, you will come to a screeching halt before you even get off the runway. Put it in your mind, BELIEVE it and take steps each minute, each hour, each day, consistently, until you complete the goal.
Stop Comparing Yourself to Others - This is about YOU becoming YOUR personal best. Envision where you are now, where you want to be and what you REALISTICALLY can and will achieve. If you have 25" thighs and you are 20% body fat, you are likely not going to have 17" thighs at 15% body fat. You need to understand your body type and accept your shape. Build YOUR best body and become the best YOU can be. This is very important to achieve peace with yourself. Otherwise you will never be happy with your body.
JUST DO IT - I know this has been used and abused but it's just so fitting. When you find yourself struggling mentally with something, just stop and take action. Our brains can be our biggest alley or worse enemy. If you find the little red devil is winning, just STOP and DO. When you want to eat a chocolate cake or go out for a night with the boys/girls, or be lazy and watch some reality TV show rather than workout - JUST GET OFF YOUR BUTT and go do something. Either prepare a PN perfect meal or go out and do some interval training. DOING will help when your mind is busy THINKING negatively or throwing excuses or rationalizations at you.
Train 'til you Want to Puke - Good old fashion hard work is a cure-all. Have no motivation to train? Follow Tip #6 followed immediately by Tip #7. That will take care of it. Want to eat a bag of Doritos, go into the garage, basement or attic and find the heaviest thing you can (bag of sand, kitty litter, old air conditioner, concrete block) and either lift it and carry it up and down your stairs or up and down your road/driveway until you want to die. If it is too heavy to carry, push it or pull it OR dump it in the middle of the room or grass and jump over it, run around it... I don't care but I want your neighbours to consider calling the police or mental health ward because they think they have lost your mind.
MOST IMPORTANT - Stop Being Lazy! Everyone is lazy - EVERYONE. Everyone trains at a level between 20 and 80% of what they are capable of. If you are a 20%'er... go for 50%. If you are an 80%'er (the ones that THINK they are crazy, hard training nut bars in the gym and people are afraid of you... there is STILL more in you!), go for 90-100%.
It's human nature to find the road most traveled. As a survival mechanism, we're designed to find the easiest, least taxing way to do everything.
However, when it comes to the reasons why people fail to attain their goals, not working hard enough ranks high on the list. It's not their fault; truly, they think they're working very hard. But it's much like knowledge — you only know what you know. You often come to the realization of your knowledge, or more specifically your lack thereof, by getting out of your little knowledge circle and learning more.
The same is true for our perception of hard work. Your definition of hard work is based on how hard you've worked to date. Until someone takes you out of your comfort zone and expands what you consider hard work, only then do you realize that you were previously quite lazy. It's all relative.
So the solution is to strive to find people who will kick your ass and redefine hard work. Once you find yourself plateauing, bored, and wondering if you're working hard enough, go find a quality, hardcore training professional to bring you to the next level.
For now, take the hard training questionnaire:
1. When was the last time you cried for Mommy while training?
2. When was the last time you had to crawl on the floor or lay in the fetal position after a set or workout?
3. When was the last time you had an anxiety attack while en route to train?
4. When was the last time you thought you may vomit during or after a training session?
5. When was the last time you couldn't or didn't want to speak or look at anyone while training?
6. When was the last time you couldn't physically form words to speak while training?
7. When was the last time you were actually afraid of the person training you or questioned their mental sanity?
8. When was the last time you had a "fight or flight" response while training?
9. When was the last time you said "I'm the laziest person on the planet" after a training session?
10. When was the last time you told someone how hard you worked in the gym? (Hint: If you find yourself having to talk about it, you didn't really work that hard. Those that work hard, truly hard, don't talk about it. It's like style — if you have to talk about your style, you don't have it.)
If you were readily able to recall instances to the above questions, then you fall into the "Hard Training" category. If you couldn't conjure up any immediate images to those questions, then you fall into the "Lazy Ass" category.
The reason you're not attaining your goals isn't your hormones, blood type, genetics, or crappy program. It's that you have forgotten that you're human and humans are inherently lazy. Now, go do some real work!