Train Like You Mean It

by Dino Brunetti, 
365 Days of Health & Fitness 
Contributing Writer 

You get to the gym, pop in the ear buds, glance around to see which piece of equipment is calling your name and somberly approach it. Does this describe your training method or do you storm into the gym with a plan of attack and then proceed to kill it? These two methods don't apply at the gym alone. It doesn't matter if you train at home, on your lunch break or at the park....Train like you mean it.

You may be asking what the difference is between training and exercising and honestly there is none. Its all in how you look at it. Athletes train for their specific sport. Police are trained at the academy. Children are trained to use the potty. Athletes don't make it to the Olympics by exercising they train and train hard. Training is done with meaning or purpose and specific goal. Training requires forethought, planning and execution whereas exercise is a generalized label for nearly any activity that doesn't require a couch.

 Step 1) Set a goal. Wait, wait, wait...I didn't say step on the scale to see how much weight you have to lose. If losing weight is your goal then try to convert your mind to think in inches rather than pounds. If you start training hard you're going to build muscle which we ALL know has a higher density than fat and consequently may make you add a few pounds while losing a few inches.

Step 2) Plan of Attack. Don't approach any training session without your handy dandy notebook (or electronic note keeping device). A good habit to get into is documenting everything. How much you lifted, how many reps, how it felt, if you had any pain or anything that you think you could use to look back on to notice change. Stick with the same program for six weeks. It's going to be tempting but don't stray from it because the second you do you'll lose all chances of looking back on that training session to see what helped or hindered you.

Step 3) Kill It. You have your goal set, your notebook in hand and now you just need to ignore your body's words begging you not to go to the gym. Remind your body that you're there for It's benefit. There are no shortcuts to achieving a goal. There's no easy way out or magic pill. There's only hard work followed by harder work for your next goal.


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