Yeah, I am lazy. There’s no doubt about that. – Usain Bolt
I’ll just come right out and say it: you think too much, you exercise too much, and you worry too much.
And what has it gotten you? You’re stressed out, tired, you have little to no free time, and you look exactly the same as you did 6 months ago.
Why do you think that is?
If you are up-to-date on all of the best new diets and workout regimens & you go to the gym 4-6 times a week, yet it hasn’t really gotten you anything in the way of concrete results – besides a recurring monthly gym payment and expensive fancy grocery bills – then why don’t you take this moment to step back and re-evaluate how effective your plan has been.
This is super common – don’t worry, you’re not a special snowflake in this regard.
But herein lies the question…are you going to continue doing the same thing over and over again, even though you’ve already proven to yourself that it is either ineffective or marginally effective for you? The program or regimen you follow may be great for someone else, but honestly, most novel diets and workout plans quite frankly just do not apply to the majority of people.
They are too complex, too much of a time commitment, too draining, and too expensive. And they usually require too much thinking.
In this post, I really want to show you just how much you can get away with while increasing your results drastically.
The Point of this Post
You do too much already.
That’s the point of this post. You do too much.
So please, before you read on, stop bouncing on that bosu ball, turn off the P90X, throw away your tofurky bacon, and just sit & relax for a second.
Take A Look Around… Seriously…
Next time you walk into your gym please look around. A quick scan will reveal all sorts of different people: different shapes, sizes, ethnicities, heights, temperaments… If you go to the gym frequently you probably know the regulars and they know you.
Let me ask you this: how much have they changed in the last 6 months? Do they look any different than the day you met them when you’d just joined?
Chances are some of them do. Several of them have probably lost some weight or gained a little muscle, and that’s awesome.
But be honest with yourself now, are these people the majority or the minority?
If your answer is the majority, and you are a member of that elite group, then you probably have no more need for this article and will fundamentally disagree with the point I am about to make – and that’s fine. Save some time and check out some of my other posts – this one is clearly not for you.
However, if you answered that these people are in the obvious, blatant minority and that most of the people in your gym, including yourself look the same or worse than they did 6-12 months ago, then this post is for you.
We are going to take a quick step back to evaluate and problem solve a little bit – with the full intention of setting you down a more effective path to get that poppin’ physique you’ve always wanted.
Tip #1: Stop Reading So Much
Chances are, since you are reading this blog, you are probably educated. And chances are, since you are educated and reading this blog, this is probably not the only blog you read.
You probably read several fitness & nutrition blogs, are a member of a couple different forums, participate in question and answer sites like Stack Exchange Fitness, and maybe even have your own blog about fitness & nutrition.
Chances are you probably read a lot about this subject.
The amount of different, often times conflicting, information on the internet regarding fat loss and muscle gain is staggering. Just trying to make sense of it all, not to mention apply it in your own life, can be absolutely paralyzing.
If you’re like me, you have a question you want answered then you sit down in front of your computer and spend the next hour or four digging through forums, looking at different products, checking out supplements, reading pdfs, and basically just following the long tail of information about that topic until you are satisfied with your amount of new knowledge.
The problem is this: even if I know exactly what to do after spending all of that time researching, it is really difficult for me to implement the changes in my life.
I can usually do something for a couple days then I fall right back into my old patterns.
Why does this happen? Well, for starters, adding something new to your routine, especially if it is some complicated Protein Sparing Modified Fast or something, is not like buying a new shirt. You don’t just put it on and fugghedaboutit.
No – you think about it alllll dayyy long – usually at the expense of the rest of your life.
Then you figure out that it is too big of a change and you abandon it.
Either that or you read so much conflicting information on a topic that you get completely paralyzed and you don’t even try to initiate ANY change at all.
I’m guilty of this myself, many times over. There’ve been many a day where I’ve found it – the golden ticket, magic bullet that will get me ripped in no time – only to read something in a forum right before closing my browser that says my theory is bunk, throwing a stick in my spokes and initiating the unraveling of any real action plan.
Well, what do I do now? JRMcLovin72 on the SportNutritionForum says this is wrong and I thought it may be wrong all along and it would take such an adjustment to initiate this change in my life and I just don’t think I have the time or energy to do this and what if it harms my kidneys…and on and on and on. Ahhhhhh!
Then what do I do? To be honest I usually just walk into the kitchen, grab a bowl of ice cream or a chocolate bar, and sit down on the couch and stare at the wall for an hour. Can I get an amen?
So how do we combat this tendency to read too far into subjects and get paralyzed, sometimes even taking a step backward as a result?
Well, the first thing we must do is stop reading so much.
I noticed a huge reduction in my anxiety levels and huge boost in my everyday happiness after I cut waaaayyy back on all the reading. For real, it’s not that important to know every little thing that every fitness blogger says about fat loss or muscle gain: just choose a plan, try it out, if it doesn’t work then try something else.
Stop obsessing over it though.
Your entire life will be so much better.
That is why it is so important to have a solid grasp on the fundamental principles behind any subject – the details do not matter so much. All you have to know are the basics then you can easily begin implementing them into your life without a huge anxiety attack or major sweeping changes to your routine.
This blog is all about understanding the basics then putting them to work in your life without major disruption – and with the result of actually getting results. Like I said in my post on Physique…
Small, consistent change is what makes the biggest impact over time – because it is sustainable.
Tip #2: Stop Exercising So Much
I guarantee you if you are “working out” frequently (ie daily), especially on a program like P90X or in training for endurance sports, you probably have an unhealthy amount of cortisol circulating in your system.
Now is this going to kill you? No, it most definitely will not.
But you just have to realize that the reason you are constantly hungry, tired, and foggy in the head is because you are pushing yourself a little bit too hard, too often.
And contrary to popular belief, you do not need to obsessively exercise or train to get an awesome physique.
You can look amazing on 2-3 workouts per week and just being active in your daily life otherwise. Just look at Martin Berkhan’s blog LeanGains if you don’t believe me. Martin and his clients have some of the most impressive physiques on the internet (some of them even compete as bodybuilders) and Martin only prescribes 3 workouts a week for his clients and readers.
Work hard when you do work out, setting big ambitious goals and going after them with everything you have. Then when you finish – be done.
Don’t think about working out until right before you work out again a couple days later. In the meantime, walk as much as you can, and if your lifestyle doesn’t permit much walking then just don’t worry about it.
Eat well, move when you can, & don’t worry be happy.
Tip #3: Stop Caring So Much
The reason you read too much and exercise too much is because you care too much. You worry too much and you are too nitpicky about details.
When you understand the principles behind how something like fat loss or muscle gain works, you no longer have to worry. You just put the right wheels in motion and continually execute.
The only time you actually have to think is when you are in the knowledge acquisition stage. After that, it should all be autopilot. That way it doesn’t disrupt your daily life to the point of you deciding to abandon the action plan you wanted to take to achieve your goals.
Why do we care so much, though?
Well quite frankly most of us are probably slightly perfectionist in our tendencies and we like to put 100% effort into everything we do. This is great.
However, we must continually remind ourselves that 100% doesn’t translate into ‘kill yourself on the treadmill every day for an hour or two’ or ‘lift until you can lift no more, then repeat tomorrow.’
No – giving your 100% means executing well on the things that actually matter.
The trick is figuring out what actually matters. Once you get that, everything else is easy.
NoGym.net is focused on what matters. Balance your endocrine system through appropriate training (in both type & frequency) and nutritional strategies and your physique and a balanced, happier life in general will follow.
I’m lazy. But it’s the lazy people who invented the wheel and the bicycle because they didn’t like walking or carrying things. – Lech Walesa
There are three main reason why you are not getting any closer to being lean or ripped than you were 6 months ago:
1. You read too much. Overanalysis always lead to internal conflict over what you should do. And most of the time we don’t end up executing on anything. It is much better to do the complete wrong thing in most scenarios and learn from it rather than do nothing and just sit there on the fence.
2. You exercise too much. We could all use a balanced approach to exercising and working out. Whether you are a couch potato or a fitness junkie – striving for a happy medium where you are not obsessing about things will go a long way in balancing the stress hormones in your body. This will help you lead a more balanced life overall and you will start to enjoy exercise when you do it instead of dreading it for one reason or another, or convincing yourself that you love it when really all it is is another unhealthy addiction that you compulsively adhere to.
3. You care too much. You read too much and exercise too much because you care too much – and when I say care I mean you are putting all of your efforts and emphasis on the wrong things. Focus all of your efforts on the things that matter; the things that will get you results. I think it is [one of the many] 80/20 rule[s] that states that you get 80% of the results from 20% of the things you do. So focus 100% of your effort on that 20% of things. The trick is figuring out what that 20% is, precisely.
Now take some action…
1. Pick your favorite 3 fitness & nutrition blogs & bookmark them. Eliminate your bookmarks for all others & stop checking them for the next two weeks. You are only allowed to check the 3 that you picked and no others.
2. Don’t read the entire articles of the blogs you picked. Just skim them and get the main points behind what the blogger is trying to say. Get the picture then move on with your life.
3. Choose 2 or 3 days this week for your workouts. Do not work out any other days. If you want to move around and can’t sit still, go out for a nice stroll for an hour or two and enjoy the scenery. Take the time to notice things you don’t normally see when you’re running around with your hair on fire per usual.
4. When you do workout, go hard. You don’t need to be throwing up or anything crazy like that – just give it your all. Remember, you are going to have a couple days to recover so you can really get at it and not worry about being too sore for your next workout.