Straight off the bat, hands up how many of you guys and girls reading this have jumped on and off the wagon more times than you wish to remember? A few right, same here we’ve all been there at least once lm sure, but why? This is my thought.
Did you really fall off?
Very cryptic question to ask to start with l know but let me explain. Sometimes we are so quick to knock ourselves down that if we even miss the gym for a day or week, sometimes even a month, our only rational explanation is ‘we got lazy and simultaneously fell off the wagon’ without any form of self exploration at all, then basically close the door to the gym or health routine until next next glimpse of sun or Instagram body crush appears. Sometimes quite simply in life priorities change short term, we can’t purely focus on the gym and training 100% (unless it’s your job) even then it’s just not realistic or quite frankly healthy. One of the worst ones iv heard before was from a friend who once sat and explained to me just how angry and unhappy she was at herself for having not been in the gym for over 3 months, and do you know why? l asked. She’d just become a mother for the first time! One of the most beautiful experiences in life over shadowed by the fact that the gym card hadn’t been swiped recently. This is not ‘falling off the wagon’ this is simply priorities changing short term, the gym mojo hasn’t died it’s just been put on hold shall we say.
I know this can’t be said for just our excuses of ‘lm too tired after work so haven’t been in a while’ or ‘l got bored’ this is…well… just falling off the wagon and not holding ourselves accountable. But there is always some self exploration needed before taring yourself with the wagon hopper brush, find out why you haven’t been, make yourself accountable for your actions. Most of the time you will realise it was something that can be very simply changed or can be worked on over time. The gym doesn’t always come first. There’s nothing at all wrong with that, there’s too many people in the industry telling us that we’re lazy if we don’t get in everyday and to put training first. Quite simply the general public are NOT athletes! There is no need to live and train like an athlete we just need to understand that yes in order to achieve our goals we need consistency but if our life changes and priorities change also, it may just take longer to get to where you want to be and we need to feel comfortable with that fact. Training and health is not a sprint as they say, too many people are in such a rush, slow down and enjoy the ride a little.
Plan of attack
So after all that deep stuff, next up let’s look at your approach.
In order to essentially only have to ‘do it once’ you need to pick the right approach that fits your lifestyle, goals and keeps you stimulated mentally as well as physically ‘find your WHY’ we like to call it. I suggest that when setting yours goals, firstly right down or take note of all the obvious predominantly aesthetic goals that come to mind. These are normally people’s long term goals, for me l don’t personally feel they have that worth. Most aesthetic goals change like the wind so to pin our long term motivation strategy on something that will constantly change already could bring potential pit falls. Let’s say for instance the aesthetic goals are short term that now need to be revised every month to six weeks maximum to help stay on track or develop if things change.
Now you’ve ticked the basic stuff it’s time to unleash the magic. Write down any other goals that come up, things as simple as ‘l want to feel happier’ ‘l want to be more confident’ and so on. People over look just how important it is to develop self worth, confidence and belief along side the external stuff in order to stay motivated and have the confidence to mix things up etc further down the line. These are now your long term goals with no huge time frame attached to them, just be aware in yourself that you’re working on them little by little as you go along.
Let’s get physical
Finally the training plan you choose must MUST leave you somewhere to go in order to develop. Why for instance if you want to build some muscle would you go straight in with a 6 day body building split with cardio, an excessive amount of lycra and creatine coming out of your eyes….. think l hit enough stereotypes there haha. But you don’t need to throw everything at it straight away, build it, grow in to a plan and develop it. Id normally start someone on a simple 2-4 days max strength split (depending on ability and experience levels) and have a huge focus on freeing up tight areas such as ankles, hips, chest, shoulders etc or keeping already good ROM and mobility whilst building up strength. Then revisit 4 – 6 weekly along with the aesthetic goals to plan the next logical step. You can do something as simple as changing the rep range or tempo to create great change. Adding days, doing and extra 30 minutes per session and bringing in supplements come in waaaaay further down the line.
It’s quite simple really, we say it a lot on the channel and all of our social platforms training is easy’ to a degree, the only thing that makes it hard is when we over complicate things or lose sight of our WHY! Realistically 90% of us are never going to be athletes so don’t put the same pressures on yourself that athletes do. Instead take one thing away from an athletes approach, train for performance. Think about it, does a sprinter really’ care about how he or she looks or is it all about how fast they get down that track i.e performance. Does a gymnast approach their workout looking for huge guns or are they more worried about smashing and awesome progression on the rings. Think of performance based goals and you will appreciate and welcome the results a hell of a lot more than just worrying about how you look.
I hope this makes sense, obviously lm (leon) super dyslexic so bare with me on the spelling/grammar 🙂