You did it.
You finally decided to start taking action with the simple and easy training plan from last months fitness magazine. You’ve prioritised your daily workouts and it’s has been going well. The short-term effects of training already showed up after the first few weeks. You’re sleeping better, your concentration has improved and your confidence is up.
But now, 2 months down the line, it doesn’t seem like you’re getting much of the results you were going for…What Now?
There could be many reasons why your progress is slower than expected. Here are three things to consider.
Nobody said it would be easy– but don’t despair it is worth it, I promise. It was the great Mohamed Ali that said he never knew how many sit-ups he did every day because he only started counting when it starts to hurt because those are the reps that count. To really get into the best shape of your life you have to really push yourself hard. No good thing ever comes from just “kinda going for it”. You have to get yourself to put everything you can into each workout. Now I know you’re probably very busy and can’t afford to be spending hours upon hours working out. So when you are ready to train, best you get on with it and make sure that you have nothing left in the tank by the time the workout is done.
A word to the wise, don’t go thundering ahead with your next workout and try to lift, run or perform movements that are at a level far above your own experience and ability. That is a sure way to hurt yourself and halt your progress immediately or even take you right back to where you started as you take a forced break to heal up. A good idea to do it right is to train with a partner that is a little more experienced that you or, if you are doing callisthenics like me, push to failure on each set counting your reps will only limit your progress.
More change is needed– Working out is fun, invigorating and it is what typically pragmatic men do to solve the problem, which is not being as fit as we want to be. But the workouts you do is only one of the trilogy of spheres you need to conquer in order to get the physique you always wanted. The other two are Nutrition and Rest. Some may even say that Nutrition accounts for as much as 80% of your overall health and fitness and Rest is crucial too because it is during these down times that the effects of your workouts are achieved through your body’s ability to adapt.
As with your workouts, Nutrition and Rest, needs to be planned into each day. But it may be difficult to make wholesale changes and stick to them. Instead, I suggest that you identify the easy wins. Start small and build on that. Focus on the meal times where you are able to take control, making sure that the changes you make are permanent. Switch off the TV, Laptop or Ipad 30min to and hour before bedtime, so that your mind is quite when you go to bed and you can fall asleep sooner.
I’ll leave the topic of Diets and Meal Plans for another article, so all I’m going to tell you now is this-You’re smart, chances are that you already know what you shouldn’t be eating. Cut the crap…and the sugary drinks and the processed, prepacked stuff you smash your face in on a regular basis and replace it with wholesome real food and water. Every small change you make is a step closer to your goal.
You’re doing too much of the same things– The Human Body is capable achieving Homeostasis with machine-like efficiency, which is a tendency to maintain a stable equilibrium between interdependent elements, especially as maintained by physiological processes such as metabolism and muscle growth(hypertrophy). Your body will quickly adapt to the changes you subject it to when you start working out, resting properly and eating right, so keep changing this up. Don’t do the same workout for more than two weeks, keep tweaking on your diet and keep on trimming your schedule until you get at least 7 hours of sleep every night.
Oh, one more thing. Make sure that the changes you make are still aligned to your goals. Substituting your leg workout with a 10km run is a good idea if you are looking to slim down, but not so good if your goal is to build strong and powerful thighs, for instance.
The path to success and achieving your fitness goals is simple but also hugely personal. You will need support, but you should also expect to have to figure some things out for yourself as well. Keep trying new things as you progress and keep the things you like and which works best for you. I’ll be here for you if you need to check anything with me.