This is the article I am going to enjoy the most: motivation.
I think that this word is the core of ‘bodybuilding’ because without motivation we would not go to gym.
Many people around me wonder how I stay motivated throughout the year, how I manage to go to gym to lift with no apparent purpose as they say. In fact there are lots of techniques to keep your motivation up.
But remember that you are the master of your body. As I often say: ‘Your mind controls your body!’
In general, motivation comes along when starting bodybuilding. During my career, I crossed the path of many beginners ready to move mountains to reach their dream body … then giving up halfway.
As I said in a previous article, bodybuilding is a thankless sport. You spend a lot of time at gym trying tirelessly to gain that extra pound on your bar or on the scale. It may take weeks before you see a slight result. It may discourage many.
With experience also comes stagnation. Who has never been to that point where despite your most intense efforts, you can’t gain any more muscle, and you are not able to increase your maximum load. Again, your motivation can deeply be affected.
Then you might question yourself. After all, why not stop now? You have given enough, so you might just want to go to gym from time to time to maintain your body.
In everyday life and especially at work, we do not always have a choice. You know better than anyone how hard it is to do something that you do not like. You are not motivated but you do not have a choice.
It’s not the case for bodybuilding! you chose this activity, you are the one who took this hobby as football, dance or beer can be for other people! You need to take pleasure in what you are doing.
Going to gym should be a time of happiness and satisfaction, not a pain in the ass. If you feel that you are forcing yourself every time you go to gym, I invite you once again to stop and look for another ‘hobby’.
A great source of motivation is your mates. Going to gym with your best (s) friend (s) can be extremely useful. In general the world of bodybuilding is very friendly because we all have the same passion (we come back to this keyword).
Bodybuilding is something that you share together like a rugby or football team. You are united together and you suffer together. This friend will always be there to push you beyond your limits and help you stay motivated.
Thanks to your friend you will tend to lift heavier, it’s a matter of pride. This is a typical human reflex that drives us to be better than the other but in good sportsmanship – I call it ‘healthy competition’.
I don’t even need to be with a friend in order to challenge myself. If I am training on the same machine than another guy, I always have the urge to show him that I lift heavier (be careful though, perform the movement correctly to avoid injury).
Finally, a friend can help you to perform a forced repetition, which is a last rep of an exercise where you couldn’t have done this last rep if you were on your own.
It may sound a bit weird as a concept and yet it is an excellent tool to boost your workouts. For me, music is one of the best sources of motivation.
Of course, if you take singers such as Justin Bieber, that’s not gonna help you a lot.
No, no, no! I’m talking about real music: movies soundtracks and trailers.
The truth is when you watch the movie 300, you immediately want to go to gym (or to fight against an army …lol). Music is definitely the trigger.
Actually, I invite you to listen to ‘End Credits’ from 300 Rise of an Empire and let me know what you think about it.
And now, I’m gonna give you two other great artists who will motivate you for your workout. I love them; they really help me to regularly go to gym: Two Steps from Hell and Audiomachine.
Again, I welcome your thoughts on these two groups.
We are actually going back to my first article – starting bodbuilding. Results are an excellent source of motivation, if not the best. But to get results, you must have set goals to yourself, enhancing the importance of knowing where you wanna go before starting.
It can be difficult to measure your progress then here is a little advice: take a picture of yourself regularly (every week) before the same framework to compare yourself over time. You can also measure your arm circumference to see if it increased.
For those who are powerlifting, you can measure your progress in terms of pounds added to your bar. To stay motivated, set new goals every week.
Nothing is more rewarding than reaching your objectives.
Kill the Routine
Here is the public enemy number one for your motivation: routine. Even if you keep seeing results with a program that you are using for a while, routine is not far and wait for the first moment of weakness to discourage you.
It is often advisable to work per cycle to shock your muscles, but also to get out of the monotony of your program. By changing regularly, you will keep your motivation up with maybe new goals.
So do not hesitate to change your program from time to time and explore new techniques!
The environment around you can be a problem for your diligence to go to gym. We are easily seduced by the dark side of television or Internet.
Besides, it is advisable to go to gym directly after work or school in order to prevent this environment trap. How many times have I seen people returning home to pick up some stuffs and they never came back to gym that day.
For those who train at home, I invite you to use all the techniques mentioned above. You must resist at all costs the urge to play video games or watch TV. Just start your workout and motivation will come by itself. Think about your goals! if you want to get there, put the means to do so!
I think that I gave you the main reasons to keep your motivation up.
If some others are crossing your mind, just let me know.
Dear lifters, it is now time to go to gym!!!