Why Am I NOT Seeing Results? ….a blog series to get you where you want to be

Hello Fit People!

This particular series will last 4 blogs (crazy right?) and will be posted weekly. So you get a month to learn what could be hold you back from your very best self.

If you are one of the MANY ( I have high hopes) who have continued on with those New Year’s goals long after that the groundhog came out of his hole, CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!

But here is the million dollar question: Are you where you thought you would be? Are you struggling with your goals already? Are you asking yourself, “Am I there yet?” Have no fear. I’ve been in this game long enough to know a thing or 2 about habits and hangups that could be holding you back from your goals. How do I know? Cause I have them too :) But if I stayed with them I would never be where I am today.

BTW, these are in NO particular order, so tackle what is relevant to you right now.

Strong Camp 90 Photo by Paul Buceta for Strong Magazine

1. You think the food will just work itself out.

Here’s the deal, you HAVE to be aware of what you are eating, period. Even the guy that ate Twinkies for the study was AWARE of how many Twinkies he was eating. In my opinion, that’s probably why that little experiment worked. Know what you’re eating and know how much. The only reason that person at the gym seems to have more definition than you is most likely because they know what they are eating and they track their food.

Choose the style that works best for YOU. Macros rock my world, but close into my competition I prefer a pretty simple diet of eating similar foods every day. This is just because it is easier to be prepared. I’m not a fan of just counting calories as we can often fill those calorie requirements with foods that do not serve us very well. You know what I’m talking about ladies. How many of you eat MORE carbs (cause girls love carbs!) and run out of calories for your protein? The body works better in balance of all 3 macronutrients so give it a fighting chance. Track your food and know what works for you.

2.You really like your “cheat” meal……like REALLY.

Do you know why “cheat meals” were termed? Body builders would run out of stored glycogen (carbs get stored as glycogen in the muscle fibers and are used for energy during heavy lifting workouts) due to low carbohydrate diets. When glycogen is depleted, strength can fade. So, the bodybuilder began to implement refeeds (which are actually PLANNED days of eating more carbohydrates to refuel the glycogen stores) and some, cheat meals.

Here is the problem……90% of the gym population are not bodybuilders (not that we aren’t working hard, but really) and yet we try to eat like one. This can be particularly true with those just starting on a strength training program. We can get all geared up and hop on a deprivation diet which is followed by a cheat meal, which turns into a cheat weekend, which causes shame and we get back in line on Monday to start the cycle again. Sound familiar?

A treat is warranted if you have been withholding calories AND especially if you have been withholding macronutrients (I don’t believe EITHER should be very low, even in weight loss), but it should be contained to ONE small treat per week with the goal of refueling a system, not bingeing to good glory because you deserve it…….

NEXT WEEK we will tackle some common mistakes in the gym and figure out how to make your membership work better for you :)

Stay Strong!

Michelle

 

NEW SEGMENT: Gym Chat

SOOOOOO…..the biggest announcement you’ve heard all day: I. Joined. A. Gym.

No kidding.

Why is it big? Well, I’ve worked at just about every single gym and know all the dirty little secrets and behind the scenes happenings. Once you know things you can’t erase them. Hmmmm, I should write a book about that….but I digress.

A few years ago I left the gym scene entirely and converted my garage into my own happy little man cave. Side note: last year I noticed my clientel was all women for the first time ever…so I bought potpourri cause women dig that stuff ;)

The physique I have now has been built in my garage, like an old car. That’s not a bad thing as many businesses were started in garages and thrive today, but Microsoft didn’t stay in a garage people! So, since I have outgrown my weights and am still looking for the next transformation, I signed up for a local chain gym (no names unless I’m paid people, LOL) and I now have a whole slew of blog post ideas to tickle your ribs. Shall we begin the journey? I thought you’d never ask!

THINGS I’VE NOTICED NOW THAT I DON’T WORK AT A GYM:

  • Girls really do LOVE cardio….sort of

I do cardio at my house…mostly because I don’t do a ton of cardio. Is it important? Yes, to an extent. You have to train for your GOALS. If your goal is to be a smaller version of what you already have, then enjoy your cardio. IF you want t tighter body where things DO NOT jiggle, pass by the dreadmills (we’ll talk more about those in a minute) and hit some heavy weights. Which brings us to point #2…

  • There is a lack of testosterone in near the weight rack, which is a funny observation as weight lifting increases your testosterone :) MOVING ON!

There are literally a handful of girls near the heavy weights most days. Where are they? On the cardio equipment. Why? To get smaller…cause smaller is better, or so we’re told. Again, refer to your real goal here. It did get me to thinking and the fact that the heavy stuff can be intimidating is a real thing. Ladies, those scary looking machines we load the plates onto? WE NEED THOSE! Most of us don’t have the grip to squat with 100+ pound dumbbells, but can probably squat over 100+ easily on the leg press. So why are the girls so shy? I have some theories:

  1. We’re afraid the boys will stare at us. TRUTH: they will, but they mean no harm. Men are visual creatures and look at ladies, but most will leave you alone if you leave them alone….just like in the wild. NOW, if you dress inappropriately and expect them not to look, that’s all on you princess. Cover up…you don’t want your skin sliding all over where other skin has already slid. Immunity, mastered.
  2. We feel as though we’ll do something wrong. So long as you don’t throw a weight clear into somebody’s head or break your own back, you’ll be OK. Stick with basic movements if your unsure your first few times out (no worries, I’m filming some just for you).
  3. What if we don’t know what we’re doing? I have great news for you: MOST PEOPLE DON’T. The average gym goer sticks to a pretty basic routine and feels lost if their machine is taken. Have a plan for your day and be flexible.
  4. We’re worried we are taking somebody else’s spot. OK, I need you to think like a guy here: if they aren’t on it when you need it, USE IT! You can’t call squatters on gym equipment, so use what you need.

gym sitting

  • Guys do this, even at 4:30 in the morning….but it’s usually a cell phone. One of the BEST things about workout out at the gym is the efficiency. You see, I can do the SAME workout I would do in my gym, but I get done in half the time. It creates a greater space for change and that makes me happy. PSA: Don’t be that person. Come in to work and everybody will respect that.
  • There are some awesome characters in the gym. One guy wears his sunglasses the whole time he’s working out…in the back of the gym…at 4:30 in the morning. Salute to you for doing your thing and being incognito sir!

I have a few self-imposed rules at the gym, just to ensure my goals are met: first, I don’t go there to scrutinize others form (though it’s hard cause I’m a form-Nazi!), I am there strictly to work on myself. Second, I don’t hoard weights or equipment. Nobody like  hoarders. Third, I am free with speaking to anybody who wants to talk it out…after my set. There are really only 2 things that drive me crazy, and I actually saw them more when I worked there as a trainer:

OBVIOUS confusion:

bis in the squat rack

If you have a question, ask somebody. You can always find those of us who are there for a solid goal and I promise ANY bodybuilder would be thrilled to show you what you need to know…after the set bro.

People putting down those just starting out or just starting back:

gym truth Sorry if the pic offends, super nerdy Sir Patrick fan :)
Here’s the reality: We ALL belong there and we all have goals that are special to us. Don’t judge others based on physical appearance when you have no idea what they are fighting through right then. Some of the thinnest people in the gym may have battled disease and those with a little extra weight may have just had triplets! Step off the high stairmill and cheer them on to their goal. The gym should be an environment to get re-inspired to reach your goals, period.

Your freebie: THE DREADMILL

I’ve noticed something quite disturbing I want to address with the girls here…

There have been many ladies (and a couple of guys) walking on the treadmill with it jacked up to Denver altitude, hanging on to the top and trudging through like a snow dog carrying life saving supplies. I have one thing to say: PLEASE STOP! I think I get that there is false info that if the treadmill is jacked up then it works your butt right? Wrong. Biomechanically, WRONG. You’re wasting energy. Weights work your butt with any myriad of movements, but not the treadmill. NOW, if you just dig walking at an incline cause you live in flat land and want to experience hiking, then jack that puppy up! BUT…release your hands. You’ll use more legs and core and keep the stress out of your neck and shoulders. And you’re welcome :)

If you happen to see me at your gym, feel free to say HI…after my set ;)

popeye workout

Michelle