Workout Motivation: Embrace the Struggle
It is human nature to make excuses. We do it every day of our lives. We find these brand new ways to rationalize our failures and shortcomings.
“I am always late because people drive too slow.”
Well, maybe you should leave your home sooner based off this groundbreaking information. “I missed my daughter scoring a goal because my phone went off and I thought it was an emergency.” Turn your phone off. I am sure your family would get a hold of you first before making you check people’s Facebook statuses.
And last but not least, “I do not understand why I am not seeing the results I want in the gym. It has been months and I go everyday and in my opinion I eat right and workout hard!” Honestly, your opinion does not matter. All that matters if what your body is telling you and obviously you are not doing something right. It is time to embrace the struggle and stop shying away from it.
The Truth – Getting in Shape is Difficult
The truth is, getting in shape is hard. Yes I know it is unbelievable! It is in that amazing revelation that one thing is clear, not everyone will succeed at getting the results they want. The fact that any person thinks they are entitled to get into shape faster or easier than another person who has put in the time, energy, and patience is in my opinion insulting.
“If it was easy everyone would be doing it.” This is painfully true. “Anything in life worth having is hard to get.” Can I get an amen?
Getting in shape is truly a universal wish. If your goal is to put on muscle, lose fat, or just be fit all around, you need to put in the work, period. Let us examine what “work” is in the fitness world.
We will start with the most important yet ironically overlooked facet, nutrition. I personally hate tuna. I hate chicken. I hate broccoli. There is another saying I love to live by, “If it doesn’t challenge you it doesn’t change you.”
Eating differently than I ever had truly challenged me. No one made me eat these foods. I made a choice that if I wanted to achieve a build that inspired others, I would have to make foods like these a staple in my EVERYDAY nutrition.
You cannot “bend” the rules of nutrition to fit your liking. I know you like McDonald’s, but a McChicken sandwich is not healthy simply because it is chicken. Yes, one bag of M&Ms are bad for you especially since it has only been 3 days since your last bag.
Also, you cannot reward yourself based off of what you feel has been a job well done. How do you know what a job well done is? You have never been in this position before. So you worked out a week and ate what you think is clean so now you deserve a cheat meal at your favorite Mexican restaurant? It does not work that way.
You must allow yourself to enter “the struggle” of getting in shape, it is verification that you are on the right path. If you start questioning yourself seeing this mission through, see that as proof you are probably putting your body through the change you are wanting. Embrace it!
The Instant Gratification of Exercise and Sweat
Next we look at what I like to say is the “easy part” because it is instant, right in front of our face gratification, exercise. We see the sweat. We feel the pain. Our lungs hurt. We might even feel a little pukey.
We walk into a place of “change” so we should be rewarded simply by association, right? Not so fast Sally. How it works when you got to a gym is you actually have to “work out.” This does not mean get on a machine and simply do resistance training with 3 straight sets of 10 using the same weight for a total time of 20 minutes.
There are no shortcuts. The people that understand this reality have a better chance at being successful.
And by simply getting on the treadmill and walking slower than you do in the grocery store you will not burn enough calories to look “beach ready” in a few months. Oh, I have not forgotten about the weight lifters/”bodybuilders.” You cannot expect to look like Arnold by doing 8 sets of bench presses, 12 sets of bicep curls, 2 sets of weighted dips for 3 reps, 1 set of squats, and 6 sets of leg presses in which you barely bend your legs. This folks does not constitute as “working out.”
Once again, we cannot formulate our workout routine to what we think will work when we have never got what we want to get! That is like me driving to your house, taking the scenic route, when I have no clue where you live. How can I decide where to drive when I don’t know where I am driving?!
And at the end of it, we complain we are lost. We complain we never got to our “destination.” We avoided the bad neighborhoods and dark forest. We avoided the struggle. We did not embrace it.
I have trained people for years. I have worked with some pretty knowledgeable fitness professionals and bodybuilders. They have all said the same thing. The people who understand there are no shortcuts always come out tried and true.
They are not afraid to put themselves through the ringer to get the results they want. It all starts out with a plan. Then we have to set our focus on that plan. It is like seeing what you want most across a body of water.
In that water lies many unknowns. Also the water has a lot of things you know you could drown you but only if you let them. There are things that can bend you but not break you. You know the swim will be rough.
You do not need a boat, heck you don’t even need a life jacket. You just know the only way you are getting across this damn water is if you swim like you have never swam before. Instead of thinking of shortcuts, you think of the shore on the other side.
In life, our struggles make us stronger. If we decide to try to do everything easy, then oddly things become harder. If we choose to take the hard road, our steps progressively get lighter and bigger. Embrace the struggles that lie ahead. God Bless.
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