Have you ever been stuck in traffic? Like bumper to bumper, or the 'T' has completely shut down between stops?
If you live and commute in Boston, it's more than likely this happens all too frequently. It sucks. We've got things to do, places to be and biceps to build. No one likes to be stuck.
Though, inevitably the traffic always starts moving. Often times slow. You move a couple inches. Then you wait. A couple more inches... then more waiting. You get the idea.
I used to HATE getting stuck in traffic. I would huff and puff and swear at my windshield (insert angry Boston accent here) and my heart rate would go through the roof.
Traffic or not I would always get to where I was going at some point.
What does that have to do with fitness?
In your never-ending quest for better fitness, you will hit the same proverbial traffic. You'll feel like it will never move although you may see an inch of progress here and there. And these slowdowns and stops will happen more frequently than you like.
When you're driving you wouldn't just give up, exit your car, light a match, blow up your 2013 Prius and sit on the side of the road. That would be ridiculous.
But often times people are headed in the right direction with their fitness, hit a bit of traffic and then completely give up. Less dramatic than blowing up your car but still isn't the best approach.
Today I'm going to share 3 things that will help you get unstuck to bust through that plateau, keep making progress and nail your fitness goals!
Feeling stuck or just not having fun on your fitness journey? Let us help!
1. Eliminate Self-Limiting Beliefs
It takes time and patience but if you want to look, move, and feel your best....start here: your belief
At AMP Fitness we believe that EVERYONE can get Better Every Day. You can start where you are, today, and get at the very least 1% better by working on your fitness, nutrition, happiness, or really anything you focus on.
We can't guarantee everyone will get the same results but we CAN guarantee that if you don't believe in yourself and you don't show up you get NO results.
Our beliefs lie in the subconscious stories we tell ourself about what we really think about the world and 'how it is'. These stories are a mix of all of the experiences we've had our entire lives so it may take some work to change anything that's holding you back. But it can be done.
One question to constantly ask yourself is: "Is this story I'm telling myself the truth?"
If it's a lie you've been telling yourself because of fear you'll have some work to do to untangle that shit. But that is the first step to moving forward on your quest.
2. Enjoy the Journey
The next step to get unstuck is to recognize that where you are now is always part of the journey. Most of us would like to be at the results part but it doesn't work like that so there's no point in fighting it.
Moving back to the traffic analogy, I mentioned that I USED TO hate traffic. It's still not my favorite but it's quite a bit more tolerable since I've changed my mindset.
What changed, exactly?
Well, for one, I started to plan ahead. I expect traffic and tend to leave earlier now (not always), I use a traffic app most days, I have Audible books and Podcasts in the queue and I totally respect that it's part of life. Communting has become infinitely more tolerable.
For fitness you can do similar things to be prepared and make the journey more enjoyable. You can:
- Have a program to follow
- Go where you enjoy the experience with others
- Expect plateaus to happen
- Focus more on the 'process' rather than the 'outcome'
You don't have to fall in LOVE with fitness (I still don't love commuting). In fact, most people don't. I get that. But you can absolutely do these things to at least enjoy the process.
Here is a quote from one of the Members at AMP after a year of training with us:
"I STILL don't like working out and it took me a while to figure out why I'm still here doing this fitness thing. Besides liking you all [the community and trainers] so much, I have gotten a little better every day since I started, just like you said. I see and feel the changes and coming to AMP is one of the best parts of my week. I still don't like fitness but I do enjoy the process now... the results are amazing, too, but that's not why I keep coming back." - Edouard
Want to see what Edouard is talking about?
3. Focus on One Thing
Now imagine you have two places to be and limited time in your day... and THEN you hit traffic. What do you do?
The obvious choices would be to:
- Cancel one of those things. Choose the more important one and nail it.
- Rush and try to do all the things. Be stressed out and potentially miss both.
Cognitive research has proven that the more things you focus on at a time the less of a chance you have at succeeding with either. A old proverb that sticks out in my head is, "They who chase two rabbits for dinner always go hungry."
Our best recommendation as fitness professionals when it comes to working towards a health or training goal is to focus on one thing at a time. Not only that but also to give it ENOUGH time to nail it.
How do you know when to switch gears?
It's fair to say that change takes a lot of time. Especially if you're looking for sustainable change. The problem is that in todays hyper-available world many people expect it to happen NOW.
For smaller habits, you can safely change focus every 2-4 weeks as long as you've been nailing it.
For bigger training goals, however, giving it at least a couple months to really nail it is a good rule of thumb. You can even focus on one big thing for up to a year to see epic changes. Whether it's fat loss, building muscle, or making strength #GAINZ... patience is key!
Your Challenge: Take Action
Once you've found a place to enjoy the journey and are in a better headspace, get out there and commit to getting better at one thing. When you succeed at that, and you will, just keep getting 1% better from there!
Want to join a community that makes fitness fun and provides expert coaching? Sign up for your FREE Strategy Session!
Steve is co-founder and head coach of AMP Fitness, downtown Boston's most inclusive personal training studio. His background is in posture, performance, injury prevention and strength development and packaging fitness in a way that is accessible to everyone. He's a brand new father, an avid reader and enjoys nerding out to science fiction.