Why Do We Fall?

Have you ever seen Batman Begins?

I have.  Multiple times.  Why? Because the Christopher Nolan trilogy is freakin badass.  
Anyway, as I was watching Batman Begins, I noticed a theme and there is an amazing quote in the movie that I think we all need to remember from time to time, because often we look at failure as an end, as being defeated.  As, well, failure.  
It’s mentioned twice, once by Bruce Wayne’s father & a second time by Alfred.

“Why do we fall?”
“So we can learn to pick ourselves up”
How many times have you failed at something, before you finally got it?  Every time we fail, we find an opportunity to learn something, not only about the task we are trying to accomplish, but more importantly, about ourselves.  We learn how far we can be pushed, how much we can take, how strong we really are.  
I’m not talking about “hey i can lift 500lbs.”  I’m talking true strength, that inner drive to not give up at the first sign of struggle, that inner voice that tells you to get up off the ground when you’ve been knocked down.

Watch a baby learn to walk.  What happens?  They get up, take a step and boom they’re down.  They get up again, get two steps, and down they go.  They adapt, they learn, they find a way to get it done.  And eventually they’re walking!

The biggest struggle I’ve been seeing is doing a push-up.  Maybe its a matter of strength, maybe its a matter of technique, maybe its a matter of learning the motor plan.  But you’re not going to give up on it.  You’re going to keep at it!  You are going to keep doing those negative push-ups, keep doing those pop-ups.  Why?  Because each time you do them, you learn, each time you collapse, you have an opportunity to pick yourself up, literally, from the ground.

Don’t get frustrated at the day to day.  Use every failure as a learning experience meant to make you better.

One of my favorite things to do on my way to work is listen to Eric Thomas, and if you haven’t heard of him go on YouTube right now!!
One of my favorite quotes, and it fits today’s theme, is

“A setback is a setup for a comeback.”
So remember that next time you’re in a struggle.

Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone

“Change comes with sacrifice… When you want to make a change you must be prepared to make a sacrifice of escaping the comfort zone!” 
― Israelmore AyivorThe Great Hand Book of Quotes

For those that have been watching our events list, you’ll be aware that I gave a presentation this weekend at FEI Eclipse alongside very intelligent speakers and fitness professionals.  If not, well, I gave a presentation this weekend in NYC on motor learning, coaching and cueing.  

All of us at AMP know that I am not the most outspoken person, nor would you describe me as extroverted.  
The running joke around AMP is that I don’t talk or use my words often.
If you’ve seen the board in the back the past few weeks, Mike and Adam have been giving me words of the day to say 10 times to get me to say more. 

So its not a surprise when I tell you that standing up in front of a conference, albeit 10-15 people is not only nerve racking for me, but it takes me so far outside of my comfort zone that I’m uncomfortable.  And that is the sacrifice I have to make in order to change or to make a change.

Not only do I want to make a change for myself, but I want to be a part of a wave of change in the fitness industry itself.  I don’t want to be in fear of speaking in front of groups, because ultimately I want to be able to do that, to teach, to educate.  Me speaking and presenting information at these events helps educate trainers in a largely uneducated field.  

So the quote above really speaks to me.  Because I have all these “outside goals” past AMP, I have to change, I have to adapt, I have to be willing to put in effort, I have to sacrifice my own comfort level to be a part of the bigger picture.  My comfort level is either staying introverted like you probably see at AMP, but its all hiding behind my keyboard.  If you read these emails and blog posts and articles that I write, you see I have no problem with words.  But that’s typing, not speaking.  It’s very easy for me to write, in fact it comes pretty natural to me.  But that can only accomplish my goals only so much.

So what does all this have to do with you?  

We all have goals, we all have aspirations, but we all also hide in our comfort zones.  How often have you found yourself staying in a comfort zone out of fear of the unknown, out of fear of what could happen?  Making a change, whether its attaining life goals or health/fitness goals requires some sort of sacrifice to get out of your comfort zone.  

It could be your uncomfortable with that out of breath feeling, or from having to give up control if even only for an hour, or uncomfortable with sweating, or lifting, or even just being uncomfortable with not excelling at something.  Maybe your comfort zone is staying with a so-so diet because getting out of it and starting a healthy nutrition plan is foreign and scary.  

Change is scary, change is foreign, change requires sacrifice. But if you really want to change, I’m telling you to get out of your comfort zone, because in the end, the results, the feeling of satisfaction will be worth it.  


Progress

Our goal at AMP is to provide you with a roadmap to success, to guide you on your journey, because that is what it is.  It’s a journey.  It is not going to happen overnight or in a week or even two weeks.  You know what WILL happen?  
Progress!!!

Progress isn’t sexy, progress doesn’t sell, progress isn’t what garners headlines.  But progress works and progress is a part of the journey!!  Every week, every day you strive to be better than you were the day before.  Doesn’t matter what it is.  Maybe you stuck to your nutrition plan better today than yesterday.  Maybe you put a little more into your workout this week than last week. Maybe you set a new PR on a lift that you’ve been struggling with.  

My biggest struggle was hitting a muscle-up.  For the longest time I kept trying and trying.  Failing each and every time.  Getting frustrated, angry, and down right pissed off.  But you know what happened when I finally hit that goal?  I was smiling from ear to ear, proud that I finally accomplished what I set out to do.

Too often we get wrapped up in how far we are from reaching our ultimate goals, which makes it seem impossible to get to.  Discouraged with how far away we are, we miss out on the opportunity to look back at where we used to be, to see how far we’ve come. 



Think about where you started. Find an old picture or think back to how you felt before you started your journey.  I’m betting that you not only look better but you feel better, have an easier time moving around, have more energy, and just have a better sense of health. 


The Takeaway: Be Proud of Yourself. Be Proud of Your Progress. 

How Often Do You Train?

How often should you train or workout?  There has to be a perfect number to see the results that you want, doesn’t there?

Not necessarily, as it all depends on how you’re training and how well you recover after training sessions.  Some bounce back quicker than others, posskbly due to their nutrition plan, sleep patterns, or sleep.  Then there are others that need two or more days between sessions to be ready. 
The point is, what is good for one person in terms of “how often,” may be detrimental for another person.  Similarly, what one does for their nutrition plan may not work for you either. That’s why you’re and individual with individualized needs and goals. 
*This is also why the programs at AMP are all individualized*

A common question I get asked is:
“Well how often do you work out or what do you do”. 

Being that I’m in semi-good shape, the thought process is that I’m going to say: “Oh, I train every day for at least 2 hours.”

The reality is that, depending on the week, I may get in 2 sessions that week, most of the time I get 3 days, and sometimes I hit 4.  Rarely, if ever do I get up to 5 or more. That’s probably my max.

My program is pretty well laid out although it may vary a little bit depending on how my body feels.  Typically I will have a squat day, an upper body day, and a deadlift day, each with accessory and/or conditioning exercises to compliment my goal of that particular day. 
If a 4th day is able to be worked in, it usually consists of conditioning exercises like rowing, jump roping, or working with the sled. 

You don’t need to work out every day. In fact I wouldn’t recommend training hard every day. The most important thing to remember is that you don’t make progress during your training.  The progress, the results, come from what you do at home, what you do to recover. 

If you’re not reaching your goals, maybe it’s time to take a step back from how often you exercise and look at the quality of your training along with analyzing your sleep, stress management, and nutrition habits.  

Two Take-aways
“Quality, not Quanitiy.”
“More is not better, better is better.”