Q: I really, really want a muscular physique like you guys have. I just can’t seem to stick with it. I’ve read books on motivation, but nothing seems to help. Any words of wisdom? Am I just a dreamer who will never get up and go after it?
A: Dreaming is the first step to getting what you’re after, but lack of motivation is the number-one goal killer. Even if you do manage to get to the gym regularly, if you’re not motivated to push hard and surpass previous bests, you won’t get results. You need to light a fire and keep it lit. (That’s one reason we put out daily newsletters—to try and keep our readers stoked.)
You say you “really, really want a muscular physique.” Why? If it’s just to show off every so often, that’s not enough to motivate most people. It has to be something deeper—an inner need to feel on top of the world, shoot your self-confidence through the roof, and take yourself to the next level. Notice that we said need; it’s not just a matter of want.
We’ve mentioned scenarios in the past that have motivated us, but you may need something more general. In his book Primal Branding, Patrick Hanlon describes why people get attached to, or even fanatical about, their chosen hobby. He used mountain biking in his description, but if we substitute “lifting” in its place, you should get a surge of inspiration as you read it (we did):
You [lift] for self-fulfillment, for the adrenaline rush, because the fat guy living next door to you can’t or won’t or is afraid to; you [lift] for affirmation, to defy death; you [lift] to scare your mother; you [lift] for a sense of love or abandonment or companionship; you [lift] because you need the endorphins; you [lift] because you are a screaming kamikaze who needs to feel the rattle of the [iron] in your bones in order to feel like your life has meaning and substance and emotions that can’t be expressed sitting behind a desk or basking in the communal fire of prime-time television. And sometimes you just [lift] to get exercise.
That’s good stuff, and to top it off, here are a couple of before and afters of us that may help you realize what’s possible with consistent, intense workouts…
We encourage you to take video and/or photos of yourself as you get in top shape, as you can use your peak-condition photos and/or video as inspiration as you get ripped and also during following years. Whenever we start a new ripping phase, we still use our own videos and photos as motivational tools, too. Proof to ourselves that we can do it.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
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