Many assume that every powerlifter, bodybuilder, Crossfitter, Olympic lifter and Iron Man always loved being in the gym. They were born gym rats, created to lift weights. There is the misconception that these fitness enthusiasts were always passionate about working out.
Take me, for example.
It took me a long time before I enjoyed lifting weights.
I always loved playing sports, but didn’t always see the value of going to the gym. In the beginning, it was like a chore. Going to the gym was just as boring as washing dishes or folding laundry. I did it as a means to an end. I wanted to look good, I just didn’t want to work to look good.
I would go to the gym on the weekdays for 1 hour and 1 hour only.
After some time I started to notice my physique changing.
I still wasn’t in love, but I was beginning to see the appeal so I stuck with it.
What I began to realize was I really liked the strength gains I was getting. The aesthetic results were nice, but I was really interested in strength and performance. I liked doing the big lifts and moving heavy weight.
That’s when I really hit my stride. I shifted my focus and started making strength based goals. I was hooked!
“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” – Tony Robbins
Identify your goal.
Whatever it is, figure out your number one reason for being in the gym. Decide what’s most important to you so you can make plans to achieve it.
Have long and short-term goals.
Hitting short-term goals will create a domino effect. Each success will build on itself. With each success you gain confidence.
If your goal is to begin exercising and to lose weight, start with simple and achievable short-term goals.
Here’s a chart my clients use to create simple fat loss habits. They’re adopted from Precision Nutrition and you can use them too.
Pick ONE of the following habits and do it every day for 14 days. Remember to start with the one you feel is the easiest to accomplish.
Break down your seemingly overwhelming goals into smaller tasks.
Don’t allow yourself to be overwhelmed and defeated by your long-term goals.
Losing 30 pounds may *sound* like an impossible task.
While losing 30 pounds sounds like a lot, losing 1 to 2 pounds a week seems very manageable.
Begin by breaking down your initial weight loss goal into simple, practical tasks. Focus on tackling the first task in your process towards achieving your goal.
Take small steps to building better habits that will last the rest of your life.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle
Set yourself up for success by choosing something you enjoy!
After you’ve chosen a goal, pick a modality for reaching it. (ex. Weightlifting, cardio, swimming, yoga.) Choose something that interests you. Whatever you choose becomes a part of your routine. Find something that is sustainable.
Find out how you can enjoy working out. Maybe you’ve tried before and are starting again. You were on the treadmill for an hour each day, bored out of your mind. You wanted to try lifting weights, but you didn’t know what to do and you were intimidated.
Don’t let your lack of experience prevent you from doing something that interests you. Seek out a coach or a good training partner. (Click Here For Online Coaching)
A good coach will not only educate you, they will hold you accountable. While you MUST be self-motivated to succeed, you will have moments where you need to be picked up. Have someone who is there to support you, especially for those times when you are struggling.
Results. Once you see success towards your goal you WILL enjoy what you’re doing!
Nothing is more satisfying than achieving your goals. Hitting your target weight, crushing a new PR, taking time off your mile. Hitting your goals will only reinforce all your hard work.
Your interest may change as time goes by.
I don’t care as much about beating my friends in Mario Kart as I did 15 years ago.
As you age, your goals change. What used to interest you, what you used to be passionate about may no longer seem important to you. This is totally normal!
Be open to taking on new challenges. Your prior success will give you the knowledge and experience it takes to accomplish your goals. The confidence you gain from each success will make future obstacles that much easier to overcome.
Once you have experienced hitting and surpassing your goals, you will begin to enjoy the process. You will enjoy not only each success but that path you took to get there.
Find what motivates you. Set goals and create habits for reaching them. Enjoy the journey!