Expectations vs Reality in the gym (part 1)

You’re thinking about signing up for a gym after quarantine is over or maybe you have already committed to a gym, that’s a great first step. Now it’s time to workout for a week and wait for our super model body and six pack abs to show themselves, right? Well…… unfortunately I have to tell you that’s not how things work in the fitness world. For this example, it probably has taken months or even years to create the body that you have right now, so don’t expect it to change for the better or worse within a week or month.

Let’s take a look at some other examples of expectations versus reality in the gym.

Expectation: I am going to achieve all of my goals by next week

Reality: Unless your goal is to lose half a kilo within the first week that is probably not going to happen, simply because it has taken you months or even years to get to your current body/healthy status. The longer it took for you to get to this point, the longer it’s going to take for you to get to where you want to go. Your body needs time to adjust to your new lifestyle, so give it time, keep working hard in the meantime and then the results will truly come. Fitness is all about the accumulation of hard work, healthy food choices and bunch of other things over time. Nothing worthwhile is suddenly going to appear in front of you without consistently working for it, that’s in life and fitness.

Expectation: Everyone in the gym is going to be super fit and judge me

Reality: First off, if this is really the case for the gym you’re working out at I highly suggest you find another gym. In most gyms 80-90% of the people are not super confident about their current health/physique status, that’s why they’re there. You will find some people who have been working out for years and it is super intimidating to workout next to them, while in reality those people are usually most inclined to help you out and support you. Everyone has been in the situation of just starting something and being nervous, even the most experienced guys and girls in your gym.

Expectation: I have to spend hours upon hours in the gym each day to see results

Reality: ”It’s not about how much time you spend in the gym, it’s about what you do within that time that matters”. That’s probably one of the best pieces of advice I have ever heard when it comes to fitness and working out. Besides focusing on what you’re doing with the time, it’s more important to look at what you’re doing outside of the gym. No matter how long you’re working out for, when comparing it to the time you spend away from the gym it seems insignificant. Let’s say you spend 2 hours working out in the gym, that means you have 22 hours left in the day. My math might be off here but to me it sounds like there is a much bigger window of opportunity for me to improve or mess up within those 22 hours than those 2 hours spend in the gym. For some people going to the gym is one of a few different tools that lead to overall health….. and they’re right. However beneficial working out on regular basis is, it will never be enough to focus on just that. Whether you want to lose weight, gain muscle, get leaner etc. you will have to look at all aspects of fitness in order to get results. The growth of all the health pillars (work out routines, nutrition, sleep, recovery etc.) eventually accumulate your overall fitness picture. Together, these pillars support our fitness and health levels, if there’s an imbalance between the pillars they’re not capable of supporting those levels.

the ”supercompensation” model

In the fitness world we have this term called ” supercompensation”, this is another way of describing the relationship between working out and recovery. Simply put, by working out you’re damaging your muscles, your body wants to recover and adjust so it’s stronger next time, the time it takes it takes for your muscles to recover and ”get stronger” is what we call supercompensation. Supercompensation can also describe the flipside of things, where we get worse rather than better. If we damage our muscles too much by not giving them enough rest in between sessions, over time we’ll create a deficit that is hard to get out of. Basically, what I am saying here is: ”doing more is not always better”. This shouldn’t be an excuse to take it easy because first you have to put in the hard work to get to that point.

Keep any eye out for part 2…. More is coming.

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Categories: bodyweight, coach, coaching, diet, Fitness, Food, gym, health, healthy, lifestyle, movement, nutrition, training, workingout, workoutTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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