I get asked a lot about what I eat, what workouts I do, how much I train etc. I do love sharing my journey with you, however everyone is different and needs different things when it comes achieving their goals.
Showing up to the gym multiple times a week and just going through the motions just isn’t enough. Maybe you’re hitting your macros and still not seeing results.
Fitness and nutrition can be complicated… We have SO much information out there, but the thing is, the information you see out there most likely isn’t for you. YOU need to figure out what works best for you! No one can tell you what works best for your body. You know it better than anyone else!
Lets try to dig a little and see why you’re at a standstill.
Not giving it 100% at the gym/Lifting too light
You’re at the gym, but your mind isn’t. Maybe you show up but have no intentions on trying to improve with what you’re lifting.
Lifting heavy won’t make you “manly”, it will make you sexier, more confident, and you will feel like a total badass, because soon you will be lifting more than what you weigh…
Please don’t be that person lifting 2LB and staring into space… If you don’t want to put in that effort why are you at the gym? Give me more space and leave… I understand everyone starts somewhere, but so often I see people lifting a feather weight and just staring off and looking like they don’t want to be there at all.
Girl, lift those weights, write your lifts down on your phone or notebook and try to challenge yourself! For my workout split I rotate push/pull days, with one heavy week and one light week. If you want to follow this work out split try something like this. On your heavy week do something really challenging and only do 5 reps! Some people are also very focused on how many reps they do, so this way you have the opportunity to switch it up. On your lighter week don’t drop the weights by too much (try around 60% of your heavy week) and do between 12-15-20 reps!
Lifting too heavy
Lifting heavy and getting stronger is the goal, however you need to make sure you’re not doing half reps. Leave your ego at home and try to focus on proper form. If you are also swinging your body to make a lift, it’s simply too heavy. Pick a weight that is challenging, but not too heavy to the point you can’t do the full movement or your form is completely off.
Avoiding muscle groups
We all have that favourite body part we train, and the body part we hate the most (and sometimes ignore on purpose). For me, I absolutely love training shoulders, but I make sure to train everything else, including chest!
When you only choose your favorite muscles to train, you will most likely fail or not try your hardest at the other ones you don’t enjoy doing. Try to find ways to make the other muscle group exercises fun! Your body needs to look balanced!
Waiting too long between sets
Go to the gym, smash weights and go home! Yes you need to adequately rest between your sets to ensure you have energy for your next lift but sometimes people can have a crazy long break between sets that’s not necessary. This results in taking too long in each workout and ultimately means they are spending way too much time at the gym. Don’t get me wrong; rests are important but no one really needs a 20 minute break in between sets.
Unless you’re a powerlifter your rest doesn’t have to be very long. If a weight is very challenging for me, I set my timer for 3 mins max! Normal time for me is around 1 min 30.
You stop when it hurts
THIS one is important! Don’t stop because your legs are on fire! Keep pushing through those reps. If you have someone training with you, have them help you push through the rest of the reps! This form of training is called “Forced Reps.” More training techniques you should really consider adding into your routine. Read here. Remember, the “pain” you are feeling isn’t actual pain but lactic acid building up in your muscles. This is normal and you need to push through it!
Burn, baby, burn!
You prioritize cardio over weight training
No, no, no, no… Cardio is very good for your health and you should have some cardio sessions in your routine. However I see so many females on the dang cardio machine all the time for hours on end.
Yes, cardio helps with weight loss, along with proper nutrition and making sure your eating the right amounts of macros. BUT, strength training helps to build muscle, which takes up less space than fat! What that means is that muscle is more dense than fat so 1lb of muscle on your body takes up less actual space on your frame then 1lb of fat.
Heavy weight training has also been shown to burn more calories for longer after a workout so I suggest you incorporate both into your workout plan. Just don’t overdo it on the cardio machine! Focus on getting stronger and building that physique. The cardio machine won’t give you that nicely shaped body, or that toned, muscular, or thick shape. I find strength training has helped me change my body for the better!
Tip: I suggest you try HIIT cardio on the stairmaster! It’s challenging, but doing HIIT allows you to burn more fat and you only need to be on there for 20 mins max! (Depending how hard you push yourself.) Have a timer, 30 sec on 30 off! When you are “ON” go for a quicker speed that works for you, so that you are really moving! When you are in “OFF” mode go at a slower pace to sow your heart rate down. You should be getting your breathing up there, that’s how you know you are pushing yourself!
You don’t switch up your routine
You go through your routine like it’s a list to check off, instead of focusing on what things should you change up. Take notes and write down how each set feels and what weights you are lifting.
Your body LOVES change. And same with your mind. The last thing you want is to be dreading the same old workout every week. The amount of stuff you can change up is endless!
- Change up your weights
- Change your grip positions
- Change how you train (Training Techniques)
- Change how you eat before and after the gym (play with your macros)
- Change your overall workout split!
I went from training one body part a session (normal, back/bi’s, chest/tri’s, legs, and shoulders) to focusing on push/pull days.
This split allows me to train certain muscle groups 2-3 times a week! For example:
Push days would consist of shoulders, tri’s, chest, legs.
Pull days would consist of back, bi’s, & maybe some deadlifts.
Then a separate leg day on it’s own (depending on how your legs feel) when you’re working them out a couple times a week, and same with shoulders and back. I have my 2 rest days a week and if I’m really tired I give myself 3. I have noticed a huge change in my body with this routine
You fear all the carbs
If you want to lose weight, yes you will have to have a “lower” carb intake, but that doesn’t mean running away from all of the carbs. You still need to live life! And for gaining muscle you will need to eat more carbs!
Carbs are your friend. Check out my grocery haul and what carbs I love to eat!
Not factoring in alcohol intake
Alcohol is full of empty calories. That’s because there are really no beneficial nutrients in booze, and even just one drink can rack up the unnecessary calories (and sugar). Try to be aware of how much you’re drinking.
Some pointers to limit both the hangover and the effects of a night out on your fitness goals, include choosing drinks with lower alcohol content, drinking fewer drinks in succession, and making sure to drink lots of water during and after a night out.
Having the occasional drink or two during the week is a fun way to treat yourself and it won’t totally derail your progress, just be mindful!
Eating the “wrong” type of healthy snacks
There are a lot of things advertised out here as “healthy” or “nutritious”, when in reality it’s completely false advertising.
Let’s take Nutella as an example, the commercials you see state it’s a great way to start your morning.. There are 54 grams of sugar in a serving of 100 grams in Nutella! That’s crazy, and I hope you would know that it’s not a healthy snack, but you can still have it from time to time.
Or those “veggie” straw chips, again, nothing wrong with having an unhealthy snack here and there, but don’t eat them every single day because you think their filled with veggies!
The first three ingredients in the veggie straws are:
- potato flour
- potato starch
- corn starch
Kind of reminds you of a potato chip right? And for the rest of the ingredients, it really doesn’t have any benefit for you and your goals.
You blame genetics
You are convinced that all buff physiques are a result of excellent genetics. This translates to a perfect reason for you to not try and make the best out of what you’ve got, and hence you’re completely missing out on maximizing your potential!
You don’t track your food intake
Even the pro’s track their food! No one knows exactly how much their eating if they don’t track it! I’m not saying you should do this for the rest of your life! It’s nice to have a break from doing it at times, but if you have a specific goal in mind, you need to eat a certain amount of protein/carbs/fat = total amount of calories, in order to lose weight or gain muscle. Not tracking properly or just eating whatever you want will make the progress slower. Learn more about macros here and use my online macro calculator to help you see how much food you should be roughly eating a day.
Take progress pictures
Something I will continue to preach! Throw out the scale and take progress pictures each month. We often get hung up on the scale. Did my weight go up or down? Why aren’t I seeing results as quickly as I want? The scale can be your worst enemy as these numbers don’t tell the complete story. By taking photos you can physically see how your body is changing. Maybe your weight went up, but you lost an inch in your waist? Perhaps your shoulders are now more defined giving you a look you really wanted. Don’t worry about the numbers; trust me, if you’re working hard enough, the pictures will really show, and it’s the best way to actually see the differences in your body!