If there is one thing the industry of fitness is rife with it’s faults, problems and misconceptions, together we will be covering 3 of the most common of each three in the areas of Training, Nutrition and Mindset.
Today I will be going over some of the most Frequent Faults I see in each of these areas. The ones I will cover are by no means all of the faults I have seen, they are however the most common.
Here are 9 Frequent Faults and HOW to Fix Them.
The first three fall in to the category of Training.
1 – No Plan.
There are lots of people who go in to the gym without even as much as a basic a generic program and plan to achieve their goal – depending on what it might be. The idea behind having something structured and tangible to follow is not a new groundbreaking discovery, however it is something that is constantly missed by many.
What program should you start with? I don’t know is the honest answer. If your goal is strength then 5×5, Starting Strength or The Juggernaut Method will work well. If your goal is fat loss then a modified version of one of those programs that has some more conditioning based work in there would be the way to go, however if your aim is to build muscle then a very classic and simple 3×10 could be best for you.
Which ever program you choose to start with will work so long as you put in the effort. Whether the program you pick will get you the results you want is another matter entirely. The best advice I can give you is to hire a decent coach/trainer and get them to write you one that is specifically tailored to your needs.
2 – Poor From.
When it comes to form you wont be expected to have absolutely every move mastered after your first session, you will however want to practice and repeat exercises to the point of which you can’t get them wrong. In the beginning when you lift weights it’s not about how much you lift but how well you lift it. Leave your ego at the door and focus on form, remember that practice make permanent so practice everything with good form.
You can learn form, techniques and various other things from books, YouTube and watching other people, but the best way to learn correct lifting technique would be to hire a trainer/coach to make sure you can’t get it wrong.
3 – Ego.
Ego can mean a great many things in the gym, for men it relates to lifting more weight no matter the cost because the ego must be appeased, as a result they end up injured and without any gains. For woman the ego takes hold in a different way and sends them on to the treadmill or cross trainer for hours at a time and as a result they avoid lifting weights for fear of a common misconception (they will get bulky – we will cover this another day).
This fault is easily fixed for men, all they need to do is address points 1 & 2 and 3 takes care of itself. As for the ladies this will need some more time, effort and understanding to conquer as it is linked in with the self image and sense of being feminine, this will be covered in the misconception section later.
The next three on the list are centered around the minefield that is known as Nutrition.
1 – Eating Too Much, or Not Enough.
It is a well known fact that people often over/underestimate their caloric intake. Men looking to ‘bulk up’ think they are eating loads when in fact they’re hardly hitting 2500cals a day and woman want to ‘lose weight’ and end up restricting calories during the day and hardly eating anything, only to get home and binge eat or binge drink on a weekend because they feel they have been good and deserve a treat.
To ensure success you will need to workout your daily caloric needs, it’s that simple. You can scroll through endless pages on the internet on how to workout these numbers, I have written several posts about this previously, therefore I won’t go over it again, follow this link to learn more.
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2 – Fad Diets.
There is something that fad diets have in common and that is that they rarely work in the long run. If you are looking for a quick fix to use then you may indeed get fast results but you will also have a fast rebound back to square one too. If you want a life long change in the way you look then you will need to make a life style change, it’s that simple.
The simple true is that calories are King and macro-nutrients are the Queen. The rest is not as important as you might think for average people. If you eat a large majority of your calories in the form of whole foods (for health purposes) then the additional cake will not make much difference every once in a while.
3 – Relying on Supplements.
This happens to both men and woman. They hear of a wonder pill or magic shake that will give them everything they desire with little to no effort and foolishly go out and spend their hard earned cash on useless products essentially. There are places and times for supplementation, however if you’re getting adequate calories from whole foods and some indulgence then the chances are you won’t need any extra supplement.
If you focus on hitting your calories and macros first then you can sue supplements to fill in any gaps if absolutely necessary. They are good in a pinch but they are not a replacement for for good old fashion food. After all, what sounds better to you; steak and eggs with veg or a strawberry protein shake, obvious answer really.
The last section of frequent faults that I will cover today is situated around a Mindset.
1 – No Patience.
Progress takes times (after you’ve gotten your beginner gains that is). Adding lean muscle tissue, weight to the bar or extra reps doesn’t simply take a few weeks, it can take months or even years in some cases. When it comes to training the secret to progression is progression, yea, you read that correctly.
When you start a new job you don’t expect to be promoted to manager within the first couple of weeks, why should progress in the gym be any different?
Using the job example lets look at a logical progression in the work place, lets say your goal is to become a manager one day.
You start as an intern, you’re there for maybe 6 months, then you’re put on a probation contract which could last up to a year as there is various bits of training involved but that doesn’t matter because after 18 months you are now a full employee and can start working your way up the corporate ladder. Fast forwards another year and a half and you might be at a supervisor, you might stay in this role for another 2-3 years before you become a team leader, followed by 2-3 more years there before you might become deputy/assistant manager and that might hen last for 3-5 years before you become the manager in charge of your own teams. All in all this has been anywhere from 9-14 years of your life to progress to that point but you wouldn’t think twice about it because int he end you achieved your goal.
Over the years you acquire various skills and abilities which allow you to perform the job of a manager, you wouldn’t expect to be at that level within 6 months so why think that the gym is any different? I will tell you why, it’s because you’ve been spoon fed logical fallacy by companies and celebrities that want to sell you something. It may sound harsh but you need to accept that if you want progress you need to be in it for the long haul. Simple.
2 – Idolisng People.
Looking up to someone is great for motivational purposes, but remember that what you see isn’t real life, it’s only a highlight reel. Try to take what you see and what you hear with a pinch of salt, if someone says “Oh, I did XYZ and got these results.” simply acknowledge them and go about your own journey because no matter who you look up to you’re not them, you’re you and you should be proud of that, especially when you achieve something.
Idolise but don’t compare.
3 – Seeing Failure as Bad.
It might not be today, or even tomorrow but one day you will want to do something and you will fail and I want you to know that that’s not a bad thing. I recently read an acronym for the word fail,it read as follows:
I found this very apt and a great way to look at failure. You should see it as a chance to learn and get some feedback from your experience, failure isn’t a negative thing, it’s a positive. We only feel bad because we see it through our ego. Take small steps and remember that if at first you don’t succeed then you simply need to squat more.
The 9 points above are some of the most frequent faults I see, take in the words above and try to see things from a different perspective. There will by 2 more posts each containing 9 more points covering common problems and misconceptions, but until then, go and work hard.