The New Year's Challenge
It's a few weeks into the New Year, and around this time many people start ditching their New Year's resolutions. When I worked in the corporate fitness setting, 3-6 weeks in is when we noticed the highest drop off of people and decrease in personal training sessions that we conducted. We used to tell people that if they could make it six weeks then they would succeed, but honestly I don't know if I would truly promote that these days as I continue to train myself and others.
A lot of people cite a lack of motivation or a stagnation in results. Some people don't like the atmosphere of the gym they signed up at, or they feel like they have no idea what they are doing when they get to the gym. These stalling points tend to get people out of the game pretty easily, but there's a mindset switch and game plan that may help you get to where you want to be. If you're wanting to stick to that resolution, I challenge you to do the following things:
1. Train in the morning.
A lot of people that see great results train in the morning. Now, I'll admit I'm biased because I'm a morning person, but I've found that the people in the morning have a sense of urgency that is tends to get stuff done. Working out in the morning also has the potential to boost your metabolism for the rest of the day, which is never a downside if your goal is to lose weight.
2. Do Your Research
I was shown a video recently of an experienced gym goer complaining about Personal Trainers confusing their clients in order to create a reliance mechanism so that the person will consistently pay for training, and I realized how easy it would be to do something like that. After all, job security as a trainer can easily become a worry for certain trainers (I've definitely experienced it). Regardless, something that you should do is research your goal and the ways that professionals (trainers/coaches using science based methods) are helping people achieve those goals. This helps you create some independence to get to your goals on your own. Now, hiring a personal trainer or a coach to guide you on that path is never a bad idea. It's actually a great idea, because there are always things such as form and identifying weaknesses that we can't identify ourselves, but knowing how and why each exercise fits into the process of achieving the goal enhances the likelihood you'll get there.
3. Quit Seeking Motivation And Get Disciplined
Something I've found more destructive and less constructive in the achievement of goals is the constant need and desire for motivation. Lack of motivation tends to be a big excuse for people when not going to the gym. They follow Gym Motivation accounts and models on social media in hopes of inspiring themselves, however this also tends to bring down self esteem and confuse them as to what really needs to happen to achieve their goal. Motivation is a sudden spur of passion, and unfortunately goals aren't achieved in a single workout.
Discipline is doing what you don't want to do, knowing that it fits into the long term success that you're after. Now, I'm not saying motivation is a bad thing. It most certainly is a good thing, however, on the days when you can't find any, discipline is what will really keep you on the path to success.
These are just some challenges I present to you, regardless of your goal. They may work for some of you out there, others they may not. But these are 3 things that I've found to be helpful in both the training of various individuals, and in my own training. Hopefully they'll help you too.