The mental side of fitness isn’t talked about nearly enough and I’d argue that it’s the most important component to higher levels of personal achievements.
So today, I want to share some important tips to improve your mental game so that you can make better progress in the gym and in life, too.
It Starts With a Purpose
Going to the gym and eating right is the easy part. Ok, maybe not easy, but less challenging than dealing with those negative voices in your head telling you that you can’t do something. (By the way, you can simplify the fat loss process HERE.)
The most important thing you’ve gotta do to create the foundation for an improved mental aspect of fitness is to have a purpose.
Without a purpose, it’ll be difficult to accomplish your goals and very easy to give up when things get tougher.
So first and foremost, what’s your purpose?
Be specific with your goals and your purpose and make sure they’re incredibly important to you. The more serious and important, the better chance you’ll follow through.
Part of the mental game is simple: just don’t give up.
It really is that simple sometimes. I stress this over and over to my online coaching clients because it really is that important.
Are you able to just keep going to do what needs to be done? Or do you stop once you’re fatigued or don’t feel like doing anymore?
If you’ve got 5 sets of squats, do you do 4 sets and call that good enough because you’re tired?
Do you run 5,275 feet and stop 5 feet short of a mile because it’s ‘close enough’?
As cliche as this might be, these sort of things might be preventing you from reaching your goals. When ‘stuff’ starts to become more challenging, do you accept the challenge or just accept that you can’t do it?
Hopefully, it’s the first option.
And, this has nothing to do with being superior at a certain fitness component like strength or endurance.
If you constantly quit when things get tough, then it doesn’t matter.
The question is, are you able to just keep pushing and to never give up?
If you can, you’re on the right path.
Being Positive to Yourself
Self-doubt and negative thoughts are natural for many people, especially when it comes to improving body composition or achieving a goal that’s difficult.
We tend to be way harsher on ourselves than necessary.
For whatever reason, we think that negativity is going to motivate us towards better progress and doing better with our programs.
But in reality what happens is that it just pushes us farther and farther away because we’re trying to reach a positive outcome by way of negative reinforcement.
And that’s not going to work in the long run.
So one thing I’d really stress to you is to be kinder to yourself. Regardless of where you’re at in your fitness journey, constantly beating yourself up and being negative are 100% not going to help you reach the goals that are most important to you.
Good things happen with positivity.
Now, being positive doesn’t mean you can just wish your way towards your goals.
But please, be nice to yourself. Beating yourself up for eating a ‘bad’ food or skipping one workout is not worth it.
One thing I stress to my clients is to acknowledge the progress they’ve made, whether small or large because progress is progress. Period.
A new online coaching client of mine has been very successful in her first month. She’s lost 6lbs and is getting stronger every session. What’s important in the screenshot below isn’t the weight loss, or the physical changes (although those are nice), but the mental shift that is starting to occur.
I’ve been working hard with her to accept that she is making great progress and to acknowledge her accomplishments so far.
It’s very, very important to appreciate the progress you’re making and your achievements. Because if you don’t, you’ll never be happy regardless of how much weight you lose or how good you look.
So be nice to yourself and appreciate how hard you’ve worked. It’s ok and actually recommended to pat yourself on the back every now and then. And then to continue working towards your goals.
Getting Outside Your Comfort Zone
Lastly, toughening your mental game will require you to get out of your comfort zone. If you’ve ever seen this picture below, then you probably know it to be true.
Because how much is really going to change if you continue doing the same stuff you’ve always done?
Whether you want a 500lb deadlift, or you want to finally get a six-pack, you can’t ‘coast’ to get there.
You will, without a doubt, have to go outside that little bubble as scary as that might be. Sometimes it sucks. Sometimes it’s scary. But, more often than not you’ll be glad you did.
Because when you get outside your comfort zone you can really see what you’re made of. And you’ll be able to accomplish more things than you ever have before simply because you’re willing to learn and try new things.
It’s quite liberating, actually.
Pick 1 thing you’ve always wanted to do but were scared to do and do it this week. Seriously. Go do it.
You’ll thank me later 🙂