#2) Wear the right threads. Proper clothes makes a difference... for mobility, comfort and sweat absorption. Invest in compression underwear. For obvious reasons.
#3)... Give it your best. You're making a great decision to take an hour out of your day to workout. So why in our busy, chaotic lives would we waste that time by putting forth a lackluster effort that isn't going to get results? Just showing up isn't
enough. The body changes for the better with challenge! Don't pace yourself, push yourself!
#4) Be humble and check your ego at the door. Whether you're overweight and in poor shape or Dwayne "the Rock" Johnson, we all have something we can do better. Maybe it's with our bodies, form, strength, mobility, or balance... it could be anything. Recognize it and most importantly, don't let a weakness intimidate or discourage you. Use it to motivate you. Believe in yourself that you'll someday conquer your obstacles. How awesome does it feel when you achieve something you couldn't do before? Or when a pair of pants are looser than they've ever been? Or for our mass gainers, when sleeves feel tighter around your arms? If you've yet to experience this, be patient and keep at it. Because it feels damn good. Complacency = mediocrity. Finding new
ways to challenge yourself will keep it interesting, making it easier to keep on keeping on.
#5) Health and fitness enthusiasts respect other health and fitness enthusiasts. The best know where they came from. We all start from the same place. And the best know that, so they have nothing but respect and support for somebody new beginning their sometimes difficult journey on the road to a healthier and fitter lifestyle.
#6) Understand it's not just about hard work in the gym. What you do at the breakfast, lunch, and dinner table
directly impacts the progress you will or won't see.
#7) Choose better form over more difficult progressions. If you can't perform something with good form, take a step down and do what you can with perfect form. Basic or simple doesn't mean too easy if you're working hard. Occasionally revisit that next
progression until you can finally nail it with perfect form. Throwing around huge weights with sloppy form or doing body weight movements like a wacky waving inflatable arm flailing tube man is about as efficient as trying to sprint across an ice rink in shoes.... The risk of danger and injury is high and there's a better and quicker way to get to your end goal. The better and quicker way? The right way with the right tools, perfect form and determination.
#8) Your body talks to you constantly. Do you listen? If you feel a burn in the muscles and you can continue the motion with good form it's saying "you're on the right track and can still push a little further."
If you feel your form slipping it's telling you to end the set and pick back up with the next set. If necessary, drop down in weight or regress the exercise to a point that you can still perform it while still being challenged.
If you have aches and pains in the joints and bones it's telling you your form may be wrong. Ask for help from a pro. If it turns out your form is spot on, then this exercise isn't for you and injury or worse pain is lurking around the corner. There are a million different ways to get a good workout. Do what's right for you personally. And you should probably seek a doctor ASAP to
understand why you're feeling such pains.
If your muscles are sore, they're telling you they're still recovering from the last workout. Don't push them to the limits at this time. Either let them recover that day or go ~50-60% of your work capacity of this muscle group to get the blood pumping to those muscles and help enhance recovery.
#9) Avoid the fads. So many people put more time, effort and money into what they hope will be the easy path to
their goals. It needs to be accepted that the pursuit of our ideal body takes a lot more work and discipline than a pill or a shake. If it were that easy, there'd be a lot more people walking around with 6-pack abs.
Don't fall into these traps. Before starting any program, do some research. If you're planning to work with a trainer or nutritionist, make sure they earned their credentials and didn't just buy the right to sell DVDs and shakes.
I'm willing to bet you'd be a lot happier just learning how to work out properly, eat right and have a full belly versus starving yourself on 500 calories a day, liquid diets, pills, etc. Don't get me wrong, I love my Gold Standard shakes for
their quality and convenience, but they're also only a small percentage as to why I've had success. I still eat 5 other meals throughout the day and work my tail off in the gym.
#10) Be proactive and drink water throughout the day when you're not thirsty. If you're thirsty, you're already dehydrated. If
you're dehydrated, your muscles won't function to their full potential and cramps (or worse issues) may set in. What's more, our muscles are ~70% water... If they're dehydrated, they will likely appear deflated and not look their best.
I get that having to use the bathroom like a drunk who broke the seal too soon isn't the always the greatest of times, but proper hydration helps the metabolism, keeps our muscles firing properly, flushes bloat causing toxins, and carries valuable nutrients to our muscles which is vital to recovery so we can come back even stronger to our next workout.
Trust me. A couple extra trips to the bathroom is well worth it!