I was working with a client the other day. It was his heavy leg day and we were looking towards increasing his weight considerably on the Leg Press machine.
I asked him to focus and concentrate on this lift before he started; to be sure that the lift in the beginning felt strong. If it wasn’t then he would have to put it down and begin again. The first lift failed. He told me that he had a stressful day, lost focus and was concentrating on how heavy it was. He had doubts. I told him, he would never make the lift if he did not exercise his “mental muscle” first. I knew he could make the lift and now he needed to know it. He took a moment, repositioned his feet, and proceeded to make his personal best.
Afterwards, he remarked, “I can’t believe how mental this sport is.” Indeed, he is quite right. The sport of weight training is an intelligent sport, not one of brute force. It is very scientific in nature, requiring guidelines, formulas and a precise way of doing the exercises. However, that said, without mental clarity and strength of purpose, you will not have what may have been the best workout of your life.
Many of my clients come in stressed to the max. They are mentally tired from their workday, family crisis or health related problems. It is important that we deal with this mental state as soon as we can, so they can have a good workout.
A famous bodybuilder used to say: “You have only an hour or so in the gym, so make it count. Leave your baggage at the gym door…” Great advice! It is not easy, but it can be done, with practice. When you give your mind a chance to rest in exercise from its busy day, you release the stress from it and give it a chance to be stronger. Focusing on what is healthy, and succeeding with your goals for your exercise program, is uplifting, energizing and empowering not only for your body, but for your mind.
Let’s face it, what can be so important that we cannot spare a hour for ourselves. Can’t the worries of the day wait just an hour? When you are tempted to neglect your workout because you are too tired, stressed, or beaten down from the day, say “no” to the doubt. Exercise your mental muscle and your right to do what is good and true for yourself and your health, and get yourself to your workout. “Leave your baggage at the door.” When you come out, you can pick it up if you want, but it will not be as heavy as when you went in.”
Love and peace