Now that I have your attention because you think I have the miracle cure to your fitness failures, I need to rein in your expectations. This isn’t a how to article, I merely want to shed some light on the fitness industry’s most over looked concept. The pre-conceptualised lifestyle adjustment.

The lack of knowledge and awareness of what it takes to become that person in your mind.  The version of you with an ideal physique, your head stuck on top, and all the positivity that comes from being that imaginary figure.

It’s already a failed attempt before you’ve begun because you haven’t really considered the lifestyle change required to get you to your imaginary body.

Here is a quick example; Mike O’Hearn is my absolute physical envy.

Have you ever really seen the typical day of a body builder? I urge you to research it, YouTube it if you have to.

A body builder will be in the gym for 5:00am having already consumed a pre-prepared nutrient specific and calorie rich meal. They then train at an intensity that us average people may never reach in our lives, followed by more specific nutrient intake and are back home before we’ve even got out of bed. 

They’ll consume more pre-prepared, timed meals throughout the day, precisely designed to be optimal for recovery and metabolic manipulation. Then, they’re back in the gym repeating that process before finally heading to bed at the perfect time to get an optimal amount of sleep, because that’s when the body does its most efficient healing.

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I look at that daily routine and think, “Wow”, it didn’t say he caught up with his mates for a beer or took his wife to the cinema; it was that strict process for weeks and weeks leading up to the photo shoot that made it’s way to my screen and the picture I saw that made me think “One day, I want to look like that”.

So I’ll ask myself this question: why on earth would I expect I could look like that?

I phrase the question that way because even though nothing is impossible, and if you’re reading this you certainly can achieve those things, but I absolutely could not look like that because my lifestyle is different, my priorities are different and if I’m being honest with myself, I could not handle that lifestyle. 

My lifestyle at the moment is based around one night a week. That’s playing a game of high intensity rugby league. The other six days are spent trying to recover from it.  When my legs feel ok, I train my legs. When my upper body feels ok, I do some uppers. My diet is healthy but sporadic and unplanned. I don’t know how many calories I’ve had when I go to bed and then sleep is another issue altogether. A massive issue with Rugby League players is the fact that all of our energy goes in to recovering from the ultimate physical challenge of playing the game. The energy doesn’t go in to forming steely abs and aesthetics.

There are things I can change in my life to get better and be better physically but that will also be aligned with when I’m ready for a shift in lifestyle. Right now I enjoy a meal out with friends, my fiancé likes chocolate, and so I compete with her by enjoying ice cream. My point simply put is, ‘your body is a reflection of your lifestyle’.

I train hard everyday and make the right choice with food every chance I get. So now after some extensive thought, my goal is to see how good I can be physically whilst maintaining this lifestyle. I’m sure that once I get there, I can set a new goal but until then, this is more realistic.

Now I’ve opened a gym, every day I learn something new about people’s training habits.  But by far, the biggest thing I’ve learnt, is something about the people that keep coming back. They are the ones that are happy with their lifestyle. Whether that’s the Mike O’Hearn’s amongst us or whether it’s the Saturday night high lifers, they all want to be the best they can possibly be.

I can train someone to physically look and feel better but if they’re not enjoying they’re lifestyle, it will all have been a waste of time.

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So for anyone for that’s reading this but not understanding, continue looking for excuses because I’m sure it’s your trainers’ fault that you’re not achieving your goals. For those on the same page as me, I urge you to evaluate your lifestyle before you set any goals. Train smart! S-specific M-measurable A-achievable R-realistic T-time bound.

Maybe the ultimate goal is happiness.