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In the past six months, I have completely changed my workout and fitness routine and achieved amazing results. I’m now back to my ideal weight of 170 lbs, and my bodyfat is down to 11%. At 28 years old, I’m in the best shape of my life. But I’ve also struggled with injuries, lack of motivation and lack of time – but I didn’t let that hold me back.
Working out is about discipline, it’s about pushing yourself. To truly get in shape, you need to change your attitudes and beliefs. This is not just about being better looking, it’s about building the confidence and discipline you need to be a good Pick up Artist and an attractive man. Here are the tips that most other websites won’t tell you – I had to learn this myself.
1 – Play a sport. If you’re a typical guy with a competitive instinct, you’ll find that sports are much more motivating than exercise for it’s own sake or bodybuilding. They get your testosterone flowing, and help build functional strength. And if you suck at first – now you have a good reason to practice more. At the gym, work out with your sport in mind – it’s motivating.
2 – Screw bodybuilding. Most of the workout advice on the internet comes from a bodybuilding perspective, ignore it. Bodybuilding doesn’t build functional strength, it’s motivated by narcissism, it’s not healthy, and it doesn’t even make women attracted to you. Ask you female friends whether they’d rather date a 220lb bodybuilder or a 180lb soccer player. Women like strength, not muscle.
3 – Work out a lot. Bodybuilders are the only “athletes” that only train three times a week. For every other sport, 5-6 workouts a week is the standard. If you’re not competing at a high level, you don’t NEED to exercise 6 days a week – but try. That way, if you miss a few workouts a week (as we all do) you’ve still worked out 4 times. Once you start feeling the changes to your body and your energy levels, you will want to exercise every day. (FYI, you don’t want to lift heavy weights more than 3x per week).
4 – Stop making excuses. I just worked out yesterday. I’ll work out tomorrow. I haven’t eaten recently. I just ate. My joint hurts. My muscles are sore. I used to have all these excuses. JUST GO. If you haven’t eaten properly, chomp down something quick on your way out, if you just ate, walk slowly to the gym. Things don’t have to be perfect.
5 – Lift weights for strength. Weight training and bodybuilding aren’t the same thing. Lifting weights can help build functional strength for sport and is good for your joints and bones. Bodybuilding is focused on cosmetics, and can lead to muscle imbalances and joint pain. Embrace weight training, forget about bodybuilding. If you want a recommendation, Mark Ripptoe has a great program for beginners to weight training. I try to lift weights 3x a week, and play sports 3x a week. This is what I do instead of watching TV.
6 – Weight lift with form to strengthen your joints. I used to have a sore back and knees that kept me from working out properly. I would baby them and avoid working them out too hard. But that just weakened the muscles around the joints, caused muscle imbalances and made my pain worse. Now I do weightlifting with proper form, and I’m strengthening my joints safely. Machine exercises don’t build strong joints. My sore knees feel 100x better since I started doing squats regularly. Again, I recommend you check out Ripptoe’s book, or other credible resources.
7 – Forget gimmicks. There are a lot of gimmicky workout routines out there. Some are total crap, some work but are for pro bodybuilders. If you’re new, you don’t need gimmicks, you need a conservative, hard, kick your ass workout to give you basic fitness and to get used to the idea of pushing yourself. Most gimmicky workout routines tell you that you can get fit without pushing yourself or working hard, but you want to work hard; that’s how you grow mentally and physically.
8 – Stop making excuses. I’m saying this twice because it needs to be said. Don’t have enough money? Don’t have enough time? Take your plasma TV or your Xbox 360 and pawn them on Craigslist. Now you have the time and the money. I’ve found that a good ½ hour workout makes me more focused and productive all day giving me more productive time. Workout regularly for a few weeks and see how much more time it creates for you.
9 – Eat healthy. No workout regime is complete without a healthy diet. Especially if your goal is to lose weight, you’re going to need to watch your diet. Lots of protein, watch your carbs, eat whole grains and veggies. There are a lot of good diet plans out there on the internet. Avoid gimmicks.
10 – Exercise your willpower. The best part of working out for me is the way it strengthens my willpower as it strengthens my body. Growth requires pain and discomfort, growth is exhausting. When you push through a tough workout or give your all in a big game, you’re training your mind to push through the troubles and the pain of everyday life. You get stronger, more confident and the slings and arrows of everyday life hurt less. It changes your life.
I’m currently following the Starting Strength workout program, which I recommend.