Letter To You From Your Older Self

Dear Me,

Keep having fun, but also keep working hard! Don’t be so wrapped up in your work that you never relax. On another note, don’t be complacent and never get any work done.

Always find a balance and work hard at being the best version of yourself! You know you can’t be Mr. Joe Cool, and never let anything bug you. You also know you aren’t always going to be a go-getter, and have the world in the palm of your hands. Seek a balance of the two, and better yourself because your own life’s journey is unique to you.

You will make mistakes and fall down; that’s a part of life. Making mistakes is the fun part! If everything were easy and you had no challenges, you’d never change. Adversity and challenges are obstacles, and overcoming obstacles develops character. Develop your character and become the best version of yourself.

The best version of “you” will be a version of you that overcame hardship; a version of you that sought adversity and became a victor. Keep fighting, and you will eventually find yourself. Do it from a standpoint of..

..pursuing your life’s ambition, YOUR PASSION! It may be cliche to say “Follow your heart,” or “Find your passion,” but do that and you will be much happier with your life. 

Also, it may be highly presumptuous to write some “life-advice” letter considering I still have a long adventure ahead of me…

But remember! I’m your older self, and I am writing this letter to you.

Sincerely,

Maxed Out Muscles

p.s.

Lift hard and dream big; set smart goals for yourself and achieve them.

  
..image courtesy of theredish.com

Write A Lot For Stronger Muscles

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By writing something every day I have found that finding something important enough to write about is often a journey that becomes incredibly introspective.  You have to dig deep inside your own head sometimes to find what it is that you want to share with others, and what is really on your mind.  You finally find it, after all of that hard thinking, and you realize each time that you are possibly gaining more from this than your audience:

  1. Self-Respect – You completed a big task today.  You got the new post up.  You worked hard on something you loved and you are actively pursuing your dreams.
  2. Yourself – this process is incredibly wrapped around your individuality and what you contribute to other people.  You find where you fit in.  You find what your passion is.  You find who YOU are.

The above is what I have learned by writing new posts for you.  The more dedicated I become, the more I realize I have further to go.  I also find how dedicated I truly am to this.  In the process, I realize that I am extremely passionate about writing and fitness.  Because of this, I’m about to explain to you how writing and working out go well together and how you can use both of them in conjunction to achieve your fitness goals:

  1. Keeping a journal – As I mentioned in my post Be Smart and Work Hard, writing in a journal or in your phone’s notepad app can be incredibly beneficial.  The reason why?  We go about our days constantly being bombarded with situations and problems.  Life can be a lot to wrap your head around so having a journal can help you categorize your thoughts and find a better plan of action.  It can also be incredibly helpful in recording your gym results.  You write down your accomplishments and then you may look back and see what you have to improve on.
  2. Re-finding your passion – Again, life can be a lot to wrap your head around sometimes.  Sometimes life just pushes us so much that we want to be lazy or complacent.  And it’s easy to be lazy or complacent, but it’s not easy to live your dreams.  However, you have to take a step each day towards being aggressive about your goals.  Do not allow yourself the comfort of settling somewhere shy of success.  A good way to prevent this is to write things out online a lot like I am here, on Maxed Out Muscles.  I look back at my old posts and where I started, and I see how far I’ve come.  I realize each time that I have a serious passion for lifting weights and becoming the best Christian Boyles.  Not only that, but the comments that some of  you leave on my posts are what often motivate me to hit the gym and work harder.
  3. Networking – Networking and writing can be two sides of the same coin now that blogging has become so popular.  When you put your voice out there in the form of a well written article you’ll find others who have the same interests and goals.  These people will often be who push you and motivate you to work harder.  It goes along well with what I said above about re-finding your passion.

Those are just three small ways that writing can help you with building your dream physique.  You can use it in a number of ways.  As I said, you could use it as a lifting journal or count your macros by writing them down.  Just, by writing out something, I am sure you will be more organized and more prone to success.

So write it down and reach your full potential in life and in the gym. 

Maxed Out On Bench! Bursting Through The Ceiling.

Maxed my bench press today and got 225 twice! I don’t consider it a lot because that’s definitely not my end goal. However, I’ll never be satisfied and until the day comes that I can’t possibly get stronger I’ll keep bursting through them ceilings!

Keep maxing out your own workouts and getting new personal records and do your best. Big things can happen. I did this in three months and I’m sure you can see amazing results too, whatever your goal may be. If you enjoy my blog, subscribe for free updates/motivation.

Why Consistency Is So Important

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Consistency – steadfast adherence to the same principles, course, form, etc.:

There is consistency in his pattern of behavior.
That is the definition of consistency by dictionary.reference.com
Consistency is important for several reasons when it comes to exercise and weight lifting.  For one, you need to be consistent.  Otherwise, what are you?  If you aren’t consistent, I’m assuming you’re following fad diets and dropping them about as quick as you start. I’m also assuming an exercise plan doesn’t last long with you.  Not saying this to be rude, but isn’t that the only case possible?  I believe that this is so.  We all need to work on being consistent with our gym, diet, and exercise habits.  Let’s highlight why consistency is so important:
  1. Being consistent can at least guarantee some results.  You may hit some plateaus, but I promise you that over time you will see results.  Whether you’ve been working out for a month or a year, going to the gym will still help you so don’t give up.
  2. Your views on weightlifting and exercise will change.  According to a huffingtonpost article I will link at the bottom of this post, it takes roughly 66 days to make something a habit.  More or less, if you stick to going to the gym and eating right, you should be able to build a habit of going to the gym and eating right.
  3. With all the dedication to exercising and weightlifting, you may learn new things.  If you get focused a certain task or aspect of fitness because you’ve been consistent and want to learn more, then you may be more apt to ask questions and research articles on diet and exercise.
  4. You will probably meet people with similar interests and make friends.  Why did you decide to consistently go to the gym?  Because you have some sort of fitness goal, right?  Everyone else there does too.  That means you already have at least one thing in common with someone in the gym.  You can get to know them better and help each other become more fit through advice and motivation.

Thank you for reading.  Please subscribe to my blog.  You can either follow me through wordpress and twitter, or click follow and type in your email address.  If you want to follow me, I’d appreciate it.

Any questions or comments?  You can comment below.  I’ll try to get back to you as soon as possible.

Links to the sources I used above:

Definition of consistency as provided by dictionary.com

Article on forming habits from Huffington Post

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.

 

How to Diet – Basic Advice

This is just basic advice for anyone wanting to follow a diet for whatever reason. It’s pretty simple. You just have to experiment a little bit with your calorie intake and make sure that it matches up with your goal.

If you’re wanting to get bigger and have lean muscle you should aim to eat more calories and also pay attention to your protein, and try to eat about .8 grams of protein per pound. You may try eating .8 grams of protein per pound of lean body mass. You can find your lean body mass by finding your body fat % and subtracting your amount of fat from your total weight.

If you’re trying to cut up and lose some weight you will want to experiment and lower your calories a little bit. You don’t want to go overboard because you could be setting yourself up for failure doing a diet that is hard to maintain. What I’d recommend is starting out by dropping soda and simple sugars like cake, candy, or ice cream. From there you can set a new goal every couple weeks like lowering your fast food intake, etc.

If you want to maintain what you’re at then you probably just need to keep doing what you’re doing. This may not hold true for someone who has spent a long time building muscle as a person with a lot of muscle probably needs to keep working out and needs to eat slightly more calories than a regular person.

If you want to find an easy way to keep track of all of this, learn a bit more about nutrition, and have an easy way to count your calories then you can try an app I’ve used and played around with. It’s called nutritionist and it should be in the apple App Store and if you have an android you should be able to get on there too. I’m sure there’s other useful apps like that too, such as fitness tracker and my plate. 

Do whatever works best for you, and if you have any other advice to add to my own feel free to add it down in the comments below.