Every day I am bombarded with questions about working out:
I've been working out for months and see no results.
What is the most important thing I can do?
What is the most effective way to workout?
What is the most time efficient way to workout?
How do I see the fastest results?
Is exercise or diet more important?
What do you do for cardio?
Where do you get your protein?
And the list goes on...
In a world of experts and the internet, it's almost impossible to know who to believe. Where do you start?
Here are a few tips to get you on your way...
- Opinions of experts only limit your capability!
Everyone is an expert! Depending on who you talk to and your own personal experiences and beliefs, you can find great experts on two opposite ends of the spectrum. As in anything in life, you are only limited by the amount of effort you are willing to put in. Unfortunately, it is human nature to look for the shortest route. It is human nature to want it yesterday. Life doesn't work that way, neither does fitness. You can't eat the apple before you plant the seed and give the tree time to grow. Trust me, I am the biggest culprit. As an athlete for 20 years, and a lifelong health & fitness enthusiast, I have heard, seen and tried everything in the book. And after all these years I have finally learned that it all comes down to patience (of which I have non), perseverance (of which I have plenty), and developing the belief that if most of what I hear and see around me are limitations by experts!
We are born with everything we need to be healthy, fit and successful. But experts around us chip away at our innate abilities to succeed. If I had a dollar for everyone that laughed, doubted and ridiculed my goals and dreams, I would be a very rich man today.
Your ability to obtain your fitness goals lies within you. But you have to be willing to, as in everything else in life, "DO THE WORK!"
The limiting beliefs of the people you surround yourself with are the only thing that is stopping you in achieving your fitness goals. You have to do the research. There will be a vast amount of trial and error as everyone is different and it takes quite a bit of work to find what works for you.
In the fitness industry, most people are looking to lose weight. Unfortunately, those are just the facts. Most people go to the gym to lose weight. The first question sales people ask members is, "What is your goal weight?" Depending on your source (and remember, there are sooo many experts out there and, they are always right), the majority of people go to the gym to lose weight and, the majority fail to achieve that goal. WHY?
There are too many "expert" opinions to list, but here are a few common reasons:
1) No time.
2) No energy.
3) No money (can't afford a trainer for advice).
Let's address some of these issues (we will go into them more in detail in the days, weeks and months to come). But first, here is my Friday morning routine (by the way, everyday is a Friday when you love what you do 😋👌).
4:50am - Wake up
6:00am - Workout #1 (speed endurance)
7:00am - Workout #2 (strength endurance)
8:00am - Workout #3 (strength)
9:00am - Workout #4 (ancillary)
12:00pm - (Breakfast - steel cut oats, http://www.ironvegan.ca/mark-mckoy/)
5:00/6:00pm - (Dinner)
9:00pm - Bed
I give you my routine for 2 reasons:
1) Unless you spend your whole day in the gym (like I do), this routine would be an impossibility.
2) More importantly, experts will come from a different background and motivation than you. In saying that, although my motivations are different than yours, and my lifestyle is vastly different than yours, you can't use that as an excuse! For example, let's go back to our primary reasons for the majority of people who fail dismally in this area year after year.
"I am 40 years old. I have put on 20/25 lbs since I left university and started to work. I sit all day long. I have 2 children. I come home from work exhausted." - everyone
For most people who gain weight as they age and their lifestyles change, it will be normal to pack on a few pounds as we develop more sedentary lifestyles. In saying that, everyone has 24 hours in a day. Many fit and healthy people have jobs and a family. Many fit and healthy people have little time, little money to spare and are exhausted when they get home at night. I see presidents, CEO's that are fit and healthy. And I see presidents and CEO's that look like they have one foot in the grave. We all have choices to make and we all make excuses for thing we don't want to do. It's just a fact of life. Most people don't like to workout because it involves physical exertion. Most of us can handle emotional exertion. Many can go days with very little rest or sleep when it comes to work or projects. Most of us can get it done when it comes to sitting behind a computer or a desk, even if we are completely spent. But when it comes to physical pain, the majority are not willing to endure. It is just easier to give up or put it off saying "you know what? I'll start tomorrow." Tomorrow turns into next week, then to next month, then to your next "New Years Resolution." Then the pounds pile on over the years. Then we look for that 3 or six month miracle program that will miraculously erase all those years of excuses. And when the pounds don't come off after a few weeks (those pounds that took years to put on), we go from miracle program to miracle program (because the first one obviously didn't work), until we get frustrated and give up altogether. Citing those 3 most used excuses, when really what we are saying is that "we want to have our cake and eat it too."
In a nutshell, what we are really saying is, being healthy is not as important as important as everything else going on in our lives.
1) I have time to watch that show (the average North American watches 38 hours of TV per week. You only need 5 of those to be healthy), but you don't have time to exercise.
2) I come home a slump in front of the TV because I have no energy to workout (sitting drains your energy. Exercise gives you energy). I have to have my Starbucks or Tim Horton's triple triple or Red Bull to get me going (which actually is a short term high with a massive downside. Not to mention more calories than one of the too many meals you eat per day) instead of having a healthy drink.
3) You seem to have enough money for all of those $6 coffees or muffins or those meals you go out for. Not to mention the alcohol.
So you see, you health and fitness basically comes down to how important it is to you. We all have the same amount of time in a day. We all have the same access to resources (if we chose to take the time). But you have to be realistic. Don't expect to lose that 10, 15 or 20 lbs with a quick fix program or diet. They don't work. A program only works...if you do! And just by making that commitment to go to the gym and walking (or running for that matter) on a treadmill (crapmill - we will get into that another time. Worst piece of fitness equipment ever invented. Invented by lazy people for lazy people) will not suffice for the "Standard American Lifestyle."
Tip #2: - The Solution (coming soon)...