Are You Confident Or Insecure? Rep It Out!

“I try my best to leave my ego outside,” is what one of the most jacked, aesthetic guys at New Leaf Fitness said the other day.  It’s a common idea, but not one that a lot of average people would expect to hear from a daily gym-goer, meat head, or serious bodybuilder.

“Oh really?!  Keep my ego outside of the gym…There’s no way you have ever done that,” is what I’d expect some of my own critics to say to me.  However, he really did say that and so would I.  The truth is that working out is a great way to please your ego and make you more self-confident, but what happens when you are bloated with self-esteem issues and pride?

Do you:

A) Always attempt lifting a weight that is far too much for you?

B) Constantly check yourself out in the mirror?

C) Only give your mirror muscles a work-out?

D) HAVE to lift as much as the other guy at your gym who has probably been lifting for years?

E) Constantly think about supplementing your “gains” with steroids or pro-hormones?

If YOU said yes to any of the above questions, then you may need to take my friend’s advice and leave your ego outside.  Luckily for you, a big part of lifting weights is building character values such as discipline and humility. Here is a short list of things I compiled during today’s workout that may help YOU succeed at your gym-going endeavors.  Not only that, but these tips may help you succeed at life in general:

  • Practice humbling yourself when speaking to other people.

smiley-mask-1245109

Keep a smile on your face and try not to talk about yourself too much!  If you make it about them you’re happy to listen to them, then you are well on your way to getting that ego of yours on lock down. This carries on into the gym, where you’ll notice that you are happy to listen to more experienced lifters who want to give you advice.  You may even become more apt to initiate the conversation.  You may wind up asking them how to improve your form or how you should go about seeing better results.  Over time, a well developed sense of humility can only make others more likely to help you on your fitness and life endeavors.

  • Make sure that your mentors are humble.

You want to be humble!  You want to listen to the advice older, more experienced people have for you.  You also know that if you hang out with losers, you’re more likely to be a loser.  Be careful about who you surround yourself with and who you take advice from.  This is a bit more challenging, but be a little selective when looking for advice.  Respect everyone and at times respectfully disagree, but make sure you don’t allow someone to give you serious self-esteem issues.

  • Try working out solo!

A lot of people don’t like to work out alone, and oftentimes there are plenty of good reasons for that.  Maybe you like to lift heavy and need a spotter.  Maybe you need the extra boost of support from a friend to get into the gym.  However, if your spotter and you work out in a way where you get seriously too competitive then it may be time to fly solo.  I’m not saying competition is always a bad thing. However, if you are so competitive with your gym buddy that you’re constantly worried that he/she can curl more than you then it may be damaging your self esteem and causing you to lift too much too soon.  Try working out by yourself with good amounts of TUT(time under tension) and progressive overload.

  • Wear baggy clothes that don’t show your muscles.

A sweatshirt, maybe?

A sweatshirt, maybe?

It’s not always a bad thing to inspect yourself and make sure that you are making some serious gains. However, if you’re checking yourself out for 75 minutes and lifting for 60 then it may be time to take action.  Some sweats would be a great option as that’s appropriate gym gear!  You know what I mean…as long as you don’t cut the sleeves off! 😉

All of this was just my advice and my personal opinion.  Keep in mind that working out is awesome, and it’s good for you.  I hope that you see a lot of impressive gains and that you have genuine self-confidence, discipline, and humility.

Have a great day!  Please subscribe to my blog via email, wordpress, or twitter for updates of my new posts.

Keep lifting folks.

Simple Guidelines Are Better

Hodge Twins Explain Why You May Not Be Getting Gains

That’s a link to a video I just watched by TheHodgeTwins on YouTube on their fitness account. Those guys are really smart dudes that give the same kind of advice I’d give. That’s just practical advice.

It’s good to keep things basic too. I find that it’s better to keep it simple than to take in a lot of information, that may or may not be bro science, and suffer from paralysis by analysis.

So if you want progress, read my blog or watch their videos. Better yet, read my blog and watch their videos. You’ll get some practical, easy to follow, simplistic advice that you can very easily add into your life. With those simple changes, at some point you’ll be able to cross the threshold from beginner and finally learn more complicated workout theory whilst remembering the classic K.I.S.S formula(Keep It Simple Stupid). Just kidding, you aren’t stupid. 

Have a great day and remember to follow me if you want free updates when I make new blog posts!

Weak Points In Fitness Life

Today I finally got around to working out one of my weak areas thus far, legs. I say that it’s only weak so far because I’ve never had a chance to extensively train my barbell squat. Finally getting to, squatting 225 seems somewhat easy. However, I know that’s not an extreme amount of weight. I know I’ll get there though, in due time.

Biceps are another weak area of mine. I’ve been curling almost the same weight for months so I’ve finally decided to go the extra yard and try different workouts for the biceps. I feel that it should work. I should be curling a lot and doing chin ups no problem in no time at all.

What are your weak areas? Feel free to post in the comments and let me know how you plan on building up on that. Your weak area can be anything: from certain muscles to cardiovascular health to that mental edge and focus…what do you need to work on? 

Compound Workouts FTW!

At just about any gym you have the ability to choose to do compound workouts or isolation exercises. If you don’t know the difference, here’s the difference:

Compound workouts work a few muscle groups in one exercise. Examples of compound workouts include:  Bench press, squat, pull ups, dead lift, and bent over rows.

Isolation workouts are exercises that work on only one muscle at a time. They isolate that muscle. Examples of these would be: Preacher curls, triceps extensions, shoulder press, leg extensions, and leg curls.

Both are great for you and you can get a lot of results by using them in conjunction, such as doing a compound workout like squat that will work about every muscle in your legs and then doing isolation on each muscle to get that extra work done.

However, this post is to explain a lot of the benefits of compound workouts.

  1. They’ll work muscles out in less than half the time. Rather than doing 3 sets for abs, 3 sets for quads, 3 sets for hamstrings, 3 sets for calves, and 3 sets for glutes you can do 3 sets of heavy squats and get about the same amount of work done.
  2. They will help you condition better. Rather than doing an isolation workout and working one muscle you are working several, and a lot of your body is involved at once so you are going to get winded a lot faster. Get used to doing repitions with good form on dead lift or squat and you will be incredibly well conditioned.
  3. They are pure awesome. You may occasionally hear someone ask how much you can preacher curl of chest press, but it’s more likely you’ll be asked how much you can bench or squat or weighted pull up when asked how strong you are. When asked these questions you want to be strong and built on a solid foundation so these workouts are generally the right ones to do in the gym world.

That’s all I’ve got to say about compound exercises in this post. I’m sure I can give you more information later and some information on isolation workouts as I am always learning new things myself. Keep working out and remember to build mass, one pump at a time. 

Lastly, take a look at this shirt my friend bought. I thought it was hilarious so here it is.