Tag Archives: mindset

Don’t read if easily offended

With Christmas around the corner are you training harder than you have before?
Morning All,
Since there will no doubt be a lot of parties and social events coming up it’s not unusual for people to start putting in more effort at the gym.
Not that this is a bad thing, however this is arguably how it should be for the rest of the year as well.
Are you someone who is always motivated or not?
If you’re the former then this post won’t apply to you.
Perhaps the latter applies to you, in which case you will need to keep reading.
First things first, answer this:
Why do you feel you struggle to become motivated?
Write down the answer.
Next, why do you feel change is hard for you personally?
Write down the answer.
Finally, what would make you feel better in yourself and why?
In the modern world we are told that we need to be fit, healthy and do some form of exercise and while this is good general advice, some people just don’t want to do it.
Guess what though, it’s okay if you don’t want to.
Not everyone wants to be healthy, lean or what is considered physically attractive by modern standards and that’s fine, there is no need to be.
Sound a bit condescending?
It reads that way to me when I read it back over, however I’m not going to change it because it’s true.
No one really cares how you look, until you look better than they do anyway.
Hav you ever had friends who support you 100% when you’re making a change only to 180 that support once you surpass them in some regard?
Chances are that’s a yes.
People want what’s best for you until it’s no longer good for them, or makes them feel bad etc etc.
I want you to ask yourself – why do I want to change?
Be honest with your answer.
If the reasons are not really your own then that might be the reason you keep failing at it.
Sorry…. Actually I’m really not.
You need to be honest with yourself and your reasons WHY you do what you do.
It’s as the classic cliché states:
“If you stand for nothing you’ll fall for anything.”
Essentially meaning unless your reasons are something YOU want or desire the endeavour is doomed to ruin.
Believe it or not there is one thing I’d wish for people.
To be internally happy.
However to achieve this is means being a little selfish, and of course we are taught that is bad, which ironically is only true if it goes against what someone else wants, if the selfish goals align then it’s all good and not selfish – funny that.
I will ask you one last time.
What do you want?
Give it some thought.

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Have we all gone soft?

“People just don’t train hard anymore. Well, I guess there are still some gyms that promote a ‘oust yourself’ mentality, but of most that’d just not the case.”
A very interesting sentence that has stuck with me one the last few days.
Morning All,
Looking back through an old training diary there was one entry that got me thinking:
A1 Deadlift – 12x2x190kg
B1 Rows – 3×6-8 – last set to technical failure – 80,90,100kg
B2 Revser Flies – 3×8-12 as B1 – 10,12,14kg
C1 Chins 50 reps – as few sets as possible
Even on paper that is a hard session.
Skip forward to an entry from the last couple of weeks on a comparable day:
A1 Press 5×1-2-3 – 60,62,65,67,70kg
A2 Deadlift 5×1-2-3 – 170,172,175,177,180kg
Again on paper it still looks reasonably formidable, however it doesn’t seem anywhere near as hard when put next to the former.
What’s happened?
Has training gotten easier?
Perhaps the trainee has gotten softer and gone backwards, rather than forwards in their progression.
While we can’t go balls to the wall every session, there needs to be ‘punch the card’ sessions where you go in, do what you need to do and leave, yet they should still be of substance.
Each session should still have a solidly defined purpose and be executed with conviction.
Do you consider yourself someone who puts in a good effort every session, or do you simply go through the motions?
Many do the latter and their progress shows it.
Certainly food for thought.

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Know your goal

Is your goal really your own?

A question more people should ask themselves.

How often have you heard of people achieving their goal only to be left feeling unsatisfied or unfulfilled?

You’d be surprised to find out that it’s actually quite common.

There are many people who undergo certain tasks to achieve what they think they want, when in reality they’re achieving what they’ve been told they want.

A very common state of affairs.

Have you ever honestly sat down and thought about why you’re doing what you’re doing?

I’d be surprised if you had, pleasantly surprised.

Knowing the underlying reasons is key to long term success and sustainability.

That said, it’s not something people give much thought to.

Might be worth considering before you set your next goal.


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Break your pattern

7 day weeks are overrated.
Especially for training.
Morning All,
When it comes to frequency of training we know that we should be hitting each muscle group or movement at least twice per week.
You can also look at this from the standpoint of hitting the muscle or movement every 3-5 days.
Most people do this by running on a 7day week, which is fair enough, most people have lives after all.
That said, there is a more interesting way.
Our body is a clever thing, it will begin to remember the pattern we adopt and as such we may unknowingly sabotage our progress.
Have you ever though about a rolling routine for your training?
Now if you have no training restrictions and can train on any day then a simple 4 day split of; Pull-Push-Legs-Rest-Repeat will work very well.
If you are constrained to the 7 day week fear not, you can still utilise a rolling training program while hitting the optimal frequency of every 3-5 days (2 exposures in a 7 day period), you just won’t train the same workout each time.
Say you have only 4 days a week to train:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday
If you use the split above it might look like this:
Pull, Push, Legs, Pull – Week 1
Push, Legs, Pull, Push – Week 2
Legs, Pull, Push, Legs – Week 3
You can see it’s a three week rotation and you’re hitting each muscle every 3-5days while also not doing them on the same day of the week, meaning some extra mental stimulation as well.
You also have to factor in exercise crossover.
^^ Deadlift & squat for example, both hit the legs and posterior chain. Perhaps you have get ups as a warm up & prowler on Leg day as a finisher, these also hit the upper body isometrically, make sense?
As you can see there is no lack of logical structure here.
Something what would be very useful is perhaps having 3 distinct workout options (think same but different), so that each 3 day block of training hits the same muscle/movement actions just with different variations of the same exercises.
Then you’d set yourself the task of doing each 3 day mini cycle 6-8 times, progressing by a doing weight, sets or reps as needed.
That would mean you have a solid program that will last anywhere from 18-24 weeks.
Talk about forward planing for long term gains.
Here is an example of different movements you may use (I will give you 3 main lifts & variations per day) –
Pull –
Deficit Snatch Grip Deadlift
Block Pull
Push –
Standard Grip Bench Press
Close Grip Bench Press
Incline Press
Legs –
Front Squat
Hack Squat
This is with the main lift, I’d then advise perhaps 2-3 accessory lifts, erring on the side of 2 as over the years I’ve found less is more.
Guess what, you can also have different options for each of the accessory movements as well, talk about variety planned in to a specific goal.
Now this might seem like a lot of effort, however it works, it works well to be honest, it works best when combined with optimal nutrition (calories set accordingly of your goal).
Give it some thought, if you can’t cray it yourself feel free to ask for some help on here.

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Ah, Classic.

Two classic lines said by many –

“I can’t put on weight, and I eat loads.”

“I can’t lose weight, and I don’t eat much.”

If the above were true weight would either go up or down, if that isn’t the case then that means only one thing.

You’re not doing what you think you’re doing.

A strong mindset and accountability are interesting things.

Not everyone wants them.

Instead they a quick fix or diet pill to solve all their problems.

If it came to their work  and the staff they manage or their business they’d rain down fiery hell on their staff for not doing what they’re meant to be doing or  making poor excuses, however when it comes to themselves and making a change, well they’re different and need special attention.


What we all need is to accept that the only way to change is to accept that we are the result of our own choices, for the most part*.

*Less for legitimate medical exceptions in which case see a specialist.

Actually, touching on the medical excuse above, many will claim to have an issue, self diagnosed of course and it stops them achieving a result.

Again, bollocks.

Go see a specialist, if something is wrong it will be shown, then you can start working to sort it.

Anyway, back to the point.

As a modern culture we have an untold amount of excuses ready and waiting for our own poor behaviours/attitudes, yet we wouldn’t accept them from out staff or people we’re responsible for.

We’d tell them how it was and that they need to sort it out.

Yet when it comes to people accepting they’re the problem, the blinkers come down and the ‘poor me’ attitude follows.

Ask yourself, do I want change or not?

Give it some thought.


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Do you want change or simply like the idea of it?

Three things that stop you making a change for the better.
– Ego
– Bias
– Excuses
Now these may seem obvious, however people let their get in the way far too often.
The ego fears dying.
The bias fears being proved wrong.
The excuses fears their invalidity.
Now take a second and see these simple musings this way…
You fear change because it means an old part of you dies, even if this part of you was self-destructive and of no benefit to your life.
You fear change because it means what you felt was right was only right because you looked for things to make it so, you sought out bias answers that you wanted to hear, rather than what you actually needed to hear.
You fear change because once you start making it you have two accept that your excuses were just that, excuses.
Do people want to hear this?
Do they need to hear this?
In the end we hold the cards in our own hand, we have the ultimate final say.
Context will play a part in our choices, however they are still our choices and as such we don’t have to make them if we don’t want to, not really.
As a fellow human I want people to be happy.
To make the changes that will make them smile and live a good life.
That said, I can’t make a choice or a change for you, that’s up to you.
Reflect on your life, give it some thought and once you have ask yourself this –
Do I want change or do I just like the idea of change?

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I bet you’re stuck, aren’t you

Do you suck at achieving the following:
Fat loss
Lean muscle gain
It’s okay, you’re not alone, we’ve all been there, some for years in fact.
If you search the internet you’ll find literally thousands of legitimate programs that if followed for an extended period of time would provide you with the results you desire.
However there’s a problem
You’re impatient
That’s what you struggle
You will often find that sustainability or rather consistency is the hardest part of a lot of truing programs, especially when people always want to be entertained and while you can make tweaks and even have different training sessions each time, they need to adhere to the basic principles of training.
– Specificity
– Progressive Overload
– Fatigue Management
Too many focus on the ‘individual difference’ side of things and as a result never get anywhere.
While it is true that people are not the same, you’ll find that a simple program of basic compound movements, sprints and whole foods won’t do many people any injustice.
If you take the time to read any of my posts (which I appreciate by the way), you’ll notice they all follow a very simple formula and that is for the simple reason that is works, every time.
The only issue is people wrongly assume they’re more advanced than they are, thus leading them to frustration.
Not to mention they also don’t train for their own reasons or goals, they go on goals they see other people working towards or goals they’ve been told to work towards.
Depending on YOUR goal there could be a number of programs that you may be given to follow that will help you achieve it, you may find there will be some monotony in the repetition, however it will probably work if you stick with it.
That said…
You can have a program that rotates and changes certain elements so long as they are not too far removed, kinda the same but different.
For example:
Back Squats to Front Squats to Split Squats and finally back to Back Squats once again.
In this cycle of movement the total reps/loads may change, al while still adhering to progressive overload.
This is where you need a good trainer to help you get this programmed correctly.
It’s also worth remembering that there is no inherent need for you have have an impressive physique, its not a mandatory things by any means, if you’re happy with how you look then more power to you.
Take a look at your current training and your results you’ve achieved, are you happy with them? Do you want more or are you content with the place you’re at?
Give it some thought.
You’ve no need to do more or change, however if you want to then just ask for help and you’ll receive it.

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Three things you need to stop immediately.

If you do I can guarantee you will feel much better.
1 – Worrying about he number on the scales.
In fact throw them out, literally. They serve no purpose other than to keep you in a narrow mindset and hold you back, remember a low umber on the scale doesn’t mean happens or health (physically, mentally & emotionally) it can often mean the opposite, sadly.
2 – Stressing over what you think other people are thinking.
I have some news for you, you don’t know what is going through other peoples heads, no, really, you don’t, so stop stressing yourself out about it.
Chances are they’re not looking at you, it’s just something you’ve conditioned yourself in to thinking.
How do I know this? Talk about irony.
I used to do it and in fact I still do it from time to time, trust me, people are rarely thinking about what you think they’re thinking about.
3 – Changing for everyone else.
It’s human nature to want to please others, however it’s not something that should cause you internal strife.
A lot of people want to change, which is not necessarily a bad thing, however it’s the reasons they want to change that could be very questionable.
Changing for reasons other than your own is a sure way to failure because the changes may not be something you want.
Take for example fat loss. Good for health, potentially yes, good to do so that others accept you or you attract that certain special someone, no, 100% a terrible idea.
Social pressure is a massive influence on people these days and the more you try to fit in with the crowds externally, the worse you end up feeling internally, then you look back when you’re a little wiser and realise it wasn’t worth it.
Make changes for your own personal reasons and you’ll be far happier for it.
There you have it.
Three things to stop doing.
Will this happen immediately?
No, probably not, however the first step in changing a behaviour (if it’s what you want to do), it acknowledging it, then accepting it, once they are achieved you can start towards the pace you want to be in, physically, mentally and emotionally.

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7 Things Coaches & Trainers won’t tell you.

– It is your fault and only you can change it

– 4 week ‘programs’ aren’t a real program, it’s just a series of simper workouts to keep your mind occupied and any results that come from it will only be significant if you’re a pure beginner.

– To see significant results you’ll need to invest in a minimum of 3-6months of personal training.

– Their social media is largely a lie geared towards selling you their product.

– You’ll never hear about the clients that didn’t get results and why it happened, here’s a hint (both parties are to blame, however the coach takes the majority of this one as it’s often down to poor communication/coaching from the coach).

– Your excuse, no matter how logical, is still an excuse.

– This is their lively hood and all the time you dick about, slack off in training, forego behaviour change and don’t do what you NEED to be doing, the worse it looks for their reputation.

After being in the industry for many a year now, I can say with a clear conscious that I no longer have time for people who don’t want to help themselves.

Sound harsh?

I really don’t care.

A lot of coaches/trainers will literally bend over backwards to help you, however if you’re not willing to help yourself then why should anyone else?

When someone newly qualifies in to the fitness industry they’re told to be motivational, inspirational, caring, empathetic and selfless, however this can often cause them personal strife and this shouldn’t be the case.

In your current job would you accept a member of staff who wasn’t pulling their weight?

No, you’d give them a reprimand and if it continued to happen you’d sack them.

You wouldn’t accept a poor attitude or behaviour, keeping this in mind, why should trainers/coaches be any different?

Nothing more than a rant today.


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Do what it is you do

Morning All,
Over the years I’ve spoken about rep goals, loading options, progression methods and much more.
The chances are that together we have gone through all the major points, you will also find that this simple page is one of a great many places where you can find information, it’s nothing special.
Keeping all of this in mind it’s time to take a look at something a great many people skirt around, stagnation.
In the beginning everyone gets results, then they slow down, shortly after this nothing seems to happen and it is at this point that people will slowly start to slip back in to old habits instead of potentially making the choice to have that little bit more focus.
Now, if you’ve reached a point you’re happy with then you really have no need to progress any further, honestly.
Once you go past the stage of beginner and end up in the realms of intermediate it’s not hard to maintain the place you’re in, however moving forwards might be, just remember that you’re under no obligation to do keep moving forwards.
Ask yourself this question:
What’s most important to me right now?
Be honest in your answer, you won’t be judged if it’s not fitness or aesthetically related, if anything I’d give you props because you’re making your own choice, rather than following the crowd of doing what you think others want you to do.
All in all you want to find what makes you happy, then continue to do what ever it is you’re doing that gives you that feeling, simple.
In a world where everyone, or at least most people are going to judged you regardless of what it is you do and give you THEIR opinion on how you should live your life, it’s important that you do what’s best for you.
As I’ve grown older it has become very apparent that being mentally stable and covent is what really matters because once you achieve that everything else falls in to place.
However that’s my opinion, it’s not fact, you can make up your own mind as to what’s important to you, it’s not my place of my interest to tell you what will make you happy.
So, ask yourself, what is most important to me right now?
Once you have the answer, focus on it.
Enjoy life while it’s here, you only get one after all.

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