Which of these two are you doing?
I think it would be wise to distinguish the difference between the two before I go any further. On the way to the gym, have you ever thought, “What am I doing tonight?” When we aren’t following a plan and building on previous work, we are working out. Whether it’s bouncing around on different machines or working at a level 10 intensity whenever we come to the gym, that is not training.
Training is following a program or a systematic approach to progressively build on previous work. What do programs address? They address mobility issues, help us to lift heavier weight, reduce body fat, lose or gain total weight, move weight quicker, recover faster, increase bone density, accelerate faster, run for longer, jump higher, etc! Look at how a bodybuilder would train compared to a power lifter. One is looking to increase lean body mass and keep body fat low, especially on competition day and the power lifter is concerned with lifting as heavy as possible. Both will lift weights but one will focus more on volume where as the other will focus on intensity. Consider an olympic weight lifter and what they will focus on. They get to be mobile throughout their entire body and move weight as explosively as possible. With these 3 different athletes, there will be three different programs and three different focuses.
Most people, especially when playing sports comes to an end and their careers go into full swing, go to the gym to stay healthy. They may not be trying to accomplish what was illustrated above, but they are still human nonetheless. As human beings, we are built to move. However, we live in a sedentary society. There are 168hrs in a week and the three hours that some people devote to their health is greatly outweighed by the other 165hrs.
Sitting down most of the day and then coming into the gym and sitting on machines is not going to help you. WE‘RE MEANT TO MOVE PEOPLE! Not just one segment of our body but the entire thing! So many people have lost the ability to move and their ego tells them they still can. Objectively speaking, the only way to know something for sure is to assess. With assessment, you get to see where you’re at. Knowing where you’re at, you can map out or program your path forward. Training is not meant to be intense. It’s meant to take you exactly where you’re at and move you forward one step at a time.
Before a goal can be accomplished, your specific needs get to be addressed. A lot of times this is what is in the gap. “I want to deadlift”, but this individual has minimal hip flexion. Whether you’re Lebron James or you work a 9-5, you are not going to safely or effectively deadlift until this is fixed. The awesome thing is, it can and will be addressed with programing, and with time, corrected! Unfortunately, instead of addressing our movement dysfunctions, we ignore them. We won’t perform certain movements because at least right now, we can’t physically do them. The more time that passes without addressing our mobility, our dysfunction gets worse, not better. Our body adapts to what we do or don’t do to it. Change your lifestyle, change your outcomes. Without taking a comprehensive look at yourself, you’re not going to know what gets to be addressed with your program. Simply saying, “I’m good” doesn’t mean you’re actually good, whatever that means in the first place.
Whether we want to or not, taking care of ourself is something we get to do. Of course we have goals and things we want to accomplish and by addressing our needs, we reinforce our goals. Whatever story you tell yourself when it comes to your health, you get to believe it or not. It’s entirely up to you. The sooner you let go of story and allow yourself to be viewed through an objective lens, you give yourself the opportunity to get what you need. Give yourself what you need and what you want will follow.
When you go to the gym on a weekly basis, you’re investing your own money, time, and effort. Wouldn't you want a maximal return on your investment? The highest quality of life you could achieve? I invite you to stop working out and start training. But you get to decide whether that investment is worth it or not for you.
YOU ARE WORTH IT! Don’t let your ego tell you you’re not.
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