The first month into your fitness journey is amazing. You smash the gym, you’re nutrition is on point and you’re more motivated than ever to not give up this time. Then the sorry day comes where the scale doesn’t change, you sleep in that one time or you let slip and all of a sudden your 6 donuts in and deep into a mental battle that you didn’t even see coming. Your brain can be your own worst enemy, so first of all, give yourself a pat on the back – your doing great! Here’s a few tips on how to keep pushing and not let your brain win!
Look back at your progress
We always recommend to track your progress somehow, whether that is taking progress pictures, taking anthropometrics (body fat %, circumferences etc) or writing down your weights for each workout. This is why; you can look back at these and remind yourself how far you’ve come. Even if the scale this week says that you’ve dropped 1lb, if you add that onto the other 5lb that you’ve lost, thats a great progression. Don’t underestimate the cumulative power of small differences and celebrate your successes, however small they may be. (A great subject to read up about is the Marginal Gains philosophy, this can translate really well into fitness).
Focus on your good points
Everyone has bits about them that they wish they could change! Even the top fitness models, athletes and celebrities have. The key to it is to celebrate your strengths and embrace your weaknessess. I would put money on the fact that someone, somewhere would kill to have some part of your body, so keep your chin up and be proud of yourself.
Make a plan
If you’re unhappy about something, the only way to get over that is to change it. This is done by assessing the problem and creating a solution. If you don’t like the extra belly fat you’re carrying, research into fitness training systems that boost your metabolism and maybe take a check on the diet to see if there’s anyway to clean it up a little bit. Often people don’t need to overhaul everything that they are doing. Minor changes can have a massive impact over long periods of time. If you’re really committed to having a healthier LIFESTYLE it’s important not to underestimate the impact they can have for long term success (marginal gains).
Don’t change too much too quickly
If you were doing a science experiment with 10-15 variables, would you change all 15 at once to measure a difference? The answer is probaby no, and it’s the same when it comes to fitness. If you change too much at once, you don’t know what factor is the catalyst for your progression. Change one thing at a time. This can be a training program, a new training system, trying out having a protein shake after your workout instead of before, getting an extra hour sleep, not looking at your phone before you go to bed…the list goes on. There’s so much that you CAN do to make a change. It can be overwhelming but if you break the problem down it becomes a hell of a lot clearer. Keep an eye out on the blog for a follow up post with an effective strategy for doing this in the near future.
Stick with what works until it doesnt work anymore
This links into the previous point. Lets take a very specific answer and say you increase your daily calorific intake my 200 Kcal as you’re trying to add lean mass. You notice this works for 4 weeks and then your progress slows up. It did work, now it doesn’t, so it’s time to change it up again, maybe another increase of 50 Kcal a day to see if that makes a difference. Give these things time to show their cards; if something seems to be making no measurable difference over 4-6 weeks, look to change it up, if its still working, keep doing it till it doesn’t work anymore. A good way of looking at it is to get the biggest possible yeild possible from the smallest possible exertion/change.
Remember, a strong oak doesn’t grow in a week, it takes years of adding rings! Imagine these rings are each week and each week gives you new opportunity to grow and achieve more.
So there you go, 5 quick tips on how to beat your brain. The key thing to take away is that any progress, however small or large is still progress.
P.S. Don’t believe everything you see on Instagram!
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