You know what I say to that?
That’s awesome, and I really hope you/they stick with it.
If they’re getting in your way and it’s a huge inconvenience for you, just remember you too started working out once and had no clue what to do, wandering around like a lost puppy dog, and more importantly felt super vulnerable.
Take that into consideration if you’re a seasoned gym veteran, and before you get all hot and bothered that they’re in your way, instead offer some helpful guidance or support.
In the spirit of this idea, I present you my “3 Essential Tips to Achieve Your Fitness Goals”.
- Can You Adhere to Your Training Program and Nutrition?
Adherence is the number one, and it’s not even close, most important factor in getting you to achieve the goals you’ve set out for yourself, hence why I listed it first.
If you can’t actually stick with a training program or nutrition program, then what good is it to you?
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve forgotten this piece of advice myself when setting up programs for clients.
I’ll spend tons of time going over everything with a fine toothed comb, making everything perfect (at least in my eyes) only to find out the client has stuck with it for all of 2 weeks and then hasn’t done any of it since.
That means I as the trainer put together not the best program for them, like I thought I had, but in actuality a terrible program, because it’s one that they won’t/can’t do.
The best program, whether it be in regards to exercise or nutrition is the one that the client actually does, and that you can then build off of and keep that momentum going.
Do you know what the biggest factor is when it comes to adherence?
Nope, it’s not time/scheduling, not work either, try again.
It might sound silly, but it really comes down to this one simple thing. Is the program fun?
If it’s enjoyable, people will actually do it. They’ll almost always find a way to do something they really like.
Now that doesn’t mean it won’t be challenging, and fun can be determined differently by different people.
For some fun is determined by whether they can see themselves improving right away. For others it’s a matter of if it gives them enough new challenges.
Whatever makes it enjoyable for you, is the most essential piece of the puzzle, because if you enjoy it, you’ll keep doing it.
- Make Sure Your Exercise Program Matches Your Goals:
First off, I should say, make sure you get yourself an exercise program to work off of in general.
No more winging it!
Chances are that hasn’t gotten you very far at this point, so get some direction and you’ll already be way ahead of the game.
Now that that’s out of the way, make sure that the program you do choose to utilize, or if you’ve hired a coach, that they’re working off of suits your needs.
For example, if your goal is fat loss, working off an old school powerlifting program based around heavy 1 and 3 rep maxes to peak strength is probably not the right fit.
Can you lose weight that way, yeah probably, but it certainly won’t be the most effective way to do it. Instead opt for something that creates a greater metabolic demand (requires more calories to be burned) and gets you breathing a little heavy at some point.
Likewise, if you’re goal is to get stronger or build muscle, then a bunch of metabolic conditioning circuits, high repetition/low weight exercises, or even crossfit/HIIT classes are probably not something you need to be doing.
This is not to say that any of these are bad programs/workout styles, but that you need to make sure they line up with what you are trying to achieve. You wouldn’t use a hammer to tighten a screw would you?
Lastly on this, please for the love of all that’s holy, pick one goal at a time and tackle it. If you’re goal is fat loss and along the process you end up getting a little stronger more power to you, but don’t try to attempt both at the same time.
- Nutrition Matters A Lot, But Not More Than Your Own Sanity
I highly doubt it would be a surprise to anyone if I said that nutrition alone for most can be the single biggest piece of the puzzle when it comes to achieving their fitness goals, and especially so when it comes to weight loss.
We’ve all heard that saying “Nobody can out work a bad diet!”
That’s not true.
What is true is that if you’re reading this blog YOU can’t outwork a bad diet.
Unless of course you’re an elite level athlete, in which case thanks for reading, but you probably also have a team of people taking care of all these things I’m covering in this article for you, so get back to training instead.
So what’s the solution?
I was recently given a task by two coaches I trust highly named Chris Merritt and Todd Bumgardner of Beyond Strength Performance (you can check them out here), as a bit of a nutritional challenge to not only help keep my own nutrition on track, but also to learn another way to help clients tackle their own nutrition challenges.
Here it is, so simple yet so effective:
Make a list with 3 columns. In the first column write down the title, “What I should be doing to eat healthy in a perfect world,” then fill it out.
Seriously, go ahead and do that, I can wait….
You did it? Really? I think you’re just trying to skip ahead. Just humor me and fill it out.
Sweet, now make another column titled, “Things I can be doing to eat healthy,” and fill out the things from the first column that you think you should be doing right now to eat healthy.
Lastly, take a look at that middle column, and write down 1-2, and certainly no more than 3 things (and I often find 3 to be ambitious for most people) from that middle column in a new 3rd column titled, “Things I WILL do to eat healthy.”
Those “Will do” things, are the backbone of everything else.
Too often, as Chris explained to me, and this is also something any of you who’ve read my stuff have heard me preach before, we try to plan for perfection and instead we end up failing.
Having a failure mindset is often times exactly what derails our progress in the first place and is probably why we have so many people restarting their “resolutions” for 3rd, 4th, and 5th times.
If we can keep you in that success mentality, then the chances you will make real progress increase exponentially.
Stay sane, enjoy your life, and bang out those few “Will Do” items on your list every day, and then further down the road, revisit that list. You’ll be blown away at how successful you were with them.
As I’ve told you all before so many times, you’re complete Rockstars!
Now, if you’re feeling up for it rewrite the list again, and shoot for a couple new goals, while maintaining those previous “Will Dos”.
Did you find this article helpful? Maybe you think I’m full of shit? Not sure how to implement any of this? Shoot me an email, or drop a comment below, or hell do both.