Our main man Adam is back for more. Please read the first 2 articles in this series if you have yet to do so:
Well, I had my first Bootcamp workout experience. Let me just say that I am now a die-hard fan of this program. As I mentioned in the first blog, I have had some experience with the typical gym scene. I actually worked in one for a while during high school. Because of these experiences I know what it is like to do the same monotonous thing at the gym a few days a week, or maybe even more often than that.
Typically I had my muscle groups divided up throughout the week so that I could be sure to work everything (or at least I thought I was working everything). This generally looked something like this: Mondays I would work legs and shoulders, Wednesdays I would work chest and back, and Fridays I would work biceps and triceps. This actually worked for me too, off and on. I gained a little more size, gained a little more strength, and felt like I was headed in the right direction. So, you might ask, where was the problem? The problem really had multiple sides.
The first facet of the issues that sprang from my pattern was that all of this was really just part of a greater cycle. Feeling good and making some gains was just the first step in this cycle. The next step was that I would begin to get lazy and skip one muscle group during the week because it didn’t feel like a big deal, or I would focus heavily on one group and leave another with an abbreviated workout. The next phase of this cycle was the fact that I would begin to skip weeks altogether because I convinced myself that I could play catch-up later. After all, I was only accountable to myself. And this all led to the final stage in the cycle, and you can probably guess what it is. You may have some experience with it yourself: I would grow complacent and quit going to the gym altogether. Truth be told, I was in this final stage of the cycle just a couple of weeks ago.
Another problem posed by this method of mine was that I skipped cardiovascular exercise altogether. I was content to bulk up a little, feel a little stronger, and loved watching the amount of weight I could lift slowly climb. But I still got winded when I was doing anything more sustained and prolonged than lifting a bar with weight on it. Even though I may have been able to curl or bench-press more than when I started, I was still out of shape. I may have slightly improved my physique, but I was doing nothing for my health or long-term fitness.
Another major problem that I ran into was that for most of the time I was looking to myself alone for motivation. Let me tell you something. If you are accountable only to yourself for the integrity of your work-out routines, you will find yourself smooth-talking yourself out of exercise with more skill than you ever thought you had. Your rhetoric will be dazzling.
That’s just because exercise is supposed to be a chore, to be miserable, to be self-induced torture. You are supposed to hate the idea of it. You’re supposed to get tired of it. It is meant to only get harder with time because you will only become capable of withstanding more and more punishment. If exercise EVER becomes satisfying, fun, or (dare I even say it) something that you actually look forward to then you must be doing something wrong. Right? Or is it?
Stay tuned. In my next blog I will begin describing what exactly about Fun Intelligent Training has begun to revolutionize the way I think about exercise. I will warn you though right now that some of what I have observed thus far will fly in the face of assumptions that you may have constructed on the foundation of prior experiences. I say this only because they certainly flew in the face of mine. I’ll tell you why…