What is the one thing that the people who step into a gym have in common? It’s not that we all like working out or want to build bigger muscles or lose weight or any of that, it’s simply that we’re all working towards a goal. Whether you want to gain muscle, lose fat or simply be able to play with your (grand) kids, that’s a goal you’re working towards. Your goals might be similar or look exactly the same as someone else’s on paper but in reality, they’re truly yours. We all know that our bodies are different, so even though our goals might line up, our paths and journeys to get there will not. So, with the knowledge that everyone in the gym is trying to achieve a goal, how is it possible that so many people struggle to reach them? Let’s be honest here, how many people around you that workout have truly achieved their goal of losing 20+ kilos or get solid six-pack abs (not the ”I am too skinny for my own good kind)? Maybe some but definitely not everyone or even the majority. That’s what I am here to talk about today, let’s figure what is keeping us away from our goals and how we can change that.
It’s going to be hard, but there’s more to it
I don’t think anyone expects their goals to be easily reachable but I also think that not a lot of people realize how hard it’s going to be either. This is something most of us find out and experience once we start working towards our goals, rather than sitting behind our desk/ couch and just thinking about it. Actually, doing the work is obviously a lot harder than just imagining what it’s going to be like. I think the part of not fully comprehending the difficulty, lies with a lack of knowledge about the different components we have to go through to reach our goals. It’s easy to think that in order to reach your goals you have to sweat your ass off in the gym and feel sore every single day. Even if you’re doing this on a regular basis, that’s not the full effort that’s going to get you to your goals (for most people and most goals). If you want to gain muscle or lose fat you will have to look at your nutrition, where do the calories throughout the day come from, how much rest are you taking in between training sessions, is the intensity of your workouts high enough, are your workouts varied enough etc.. If your goal is playing with your (grand) kids, you will have to look at other factors like: yoga, mobility, stretching, nutrition, functional/natural movements and moving outside of the gym as well. As you can see, it doesn’t matter what your goal is, there will always be more to it than just ”simply” working your ass off in the gym.
Understanding that putting in hard work in the gym is the first big step of preparing yourself for your journey towards your goal but don’t be fooled into thinking that its going to be enough. Overlooking the fact that there’s more to it is probably one of the biggest reasons why people give up, quit or never get there. Don’t turn a blind eye to it because you’re going to be putting in a lot of time and energy without getting anywhere.
Set smaller goals along the way
Everyone likes to think about the big picture of losing their 20 kilos or getting their six-pack abs, but first we’ ll have to work through different goals and progress points to get there. If we’re just looking at the big picture it can feel and seem like you’re never going to get to your big goal. only having the big picture/goal in mind makes it easier for us to get discouraged and de-motivated and we all know that for most people that leads to giving up. Setting smaller goals along the way that you can work towards will make it much easier for your brain to stay motivated and excited for. For most people it’s easier to lose those 20 kilos in smaller increments of 5 kilos, because it seems more within our reach and capabilities.
Enjoy the process and end goal
I talk to people about this all the time, if you’re not enjoying what you’re doing or working towards, it’s not going to last. Even if you end up realizing your goal, if you don’t appreciate/ enjoy that point, why did you put so much time and effort in? If you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, the chances of you reaching your goals are very slim, because you’re not able to answer the question that inevitably will pop up into your mind. Why am I doing this? For most of us this question pops up during a tough workout or when we are sore during the following days, but it will definitely come up when things aren’t going the way you want them to, workouts are hard, progress is not as significant anymore, food tastes blend etc.. If you enjoy what you’re doing you will be able to answer that question and push through those tough moments, if not…. well, you know what comes next.
Don’t be motivated, be dedicated
Motivation only lasts for so long; motivation is watching a 10-minute YouTube video to pump you up for your training session or seeing someone lift heavier than you. The reason you have to keep doing that is because motivation is temporarily. On the other hand, dedication isn’t something you can turn off, it’s there 24/7 or it isn’t. Sure, you can still hype yourself up by watching those videos but that doesn’t take away the fact that you would have gotten that workout in regardless of anything that you may or may not have watched before. Dedication simply means that you will do what is necessary to get what you want, regardless of any circumstances that may occur.
Motivation will get you through a single workout session, dedication will get you all the way to your goal.
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