Have you met people in the gym, who come religiously 5 times a week for 2 years, only to notice that they have become fatter than when they first started? Or people who ask you for advice, you tell them, but then weeks later you see that they have reverted back to their same old routine. When you ask them what happened, they tell you they were not comfortable with the new routine, so they went back to what felt familiar. Well that's fine, but do you really expect to see a different result by doing the same thing over and over again?
Well i meet a lot of people like this in the gym and it makes me wonder why people keep trying things that don't work. If you are doing something and not getting the results you want, then there is obviously something wrong with what you are doing. To get a different result, you have to do something different. That's how the world works, and in fitness, its no different.
Some time ago, i attended a seminar where the speaker spoke about people getting out of their comfort zone. Your comfort zone is basically your usual routine which you are familiar with and of course comfortable with. When asked to do something that is out of this routine, is basically asking you to come out of your comfort zone. And then he shared this gem of a quote from Albert Einstein - Insanity, is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Do you fall into this trap? If you do, then its time to change things up in the gym.
If you have been training for a while and still not getting the results you want, then you really need to look at what you are doing and make the necessary changes, or you won't see results. For the longest time, i was doing a particular arm routine and just could not see any progress at all. Then one day, some one suggested another routine, i tried it and started seeing results. So obviously, i was doing something wrong, hence why i was not getting the results i wanted. had i continued with that flawed routine, i would not have seen any results at all till today
So what should you do if you are not seeing results from your current routine? Do something different. Here are some general tips which will work well for both muscle gain and weight loss
1) Change the exercise you are doing
I find this to be extremely effective. If you are doing dumbbell curls and not seeing results, then swap the exercises with other exercises until you find one that does work for you. Try an exercise for at least 2 months before you decide to chuck it and try something else. Eventually you will find an exercise that works wonders for you and then you will know that this is what you need to be doing. If you are doing the stationary bike and not seeing the weight loss results you want, then try the treadmill or running outside. Again, changing the exercises you do is a great way to change the results you are getting.
2) Increase the intensity
I have seen this too often in the gym. Guy walks into gym in 2008. Starts benching an empty bar. in 2011, he is still benching an empty bar. Buddy, you ain't going to get big by benching an empty bar. You need to keep increasing the intensity to see results. If you are currently benching 50kg and doing 15 reps, try increasing it to 55kg or 60kg and drop the reps to 10 to 12. This alone could give you great results within weeks. If you are running on the treadmill for 20 minutes at the same speed, and not seeing any weight loss, try running faster, increasing the incline, increasing the time or do interval training. The point is, if whatever your are doing is not working, then you may need to increase the intensity to see results.
3) Hire a qualified PT
Sometimes, we become so used to the exercise we do, that we could have the wrong technique which has now become blind spots for us. Or you could be using a routine which has absolutely no point, but you are unsure how to change it. For situations like these, its best to seek professional help. A qualified PT will be able to guide you through a routine which he / she has tested and knows will give results. Also, the PT will be able to point out whats wrong in your current routine which is not giving you the results you want. So if you are serious about results, sometimes you just have to fork out the money. It is an investment on... you.
4) Play around with your food
I don't mean literally, i mean changing up your diet. As most of us know, nutrition plays an equally important role in staying fit as is exercise. To see different results, you have to change your nutrition plan as well. If you are sweating it out in the gym 5 times a week and still not seeing any weight loss, there is 99% chance that the problem may lie in what you are eating. Changing what you eat can have drastic results to your body. Similarly, if you want to gain muscle mass and just can't seem to squeeze in even one more pound, look at what you are eating and you may have to up your daily food intake. So yes, mixing things up is not confined to only the gym. In fact, i personally feel that people don't see the results they want because of poor diet choices. So if you are not seeing results, take a good look at what you are eating. I was suddenly losing too much weight over the past few weeks and everyone i met kept saying i lost weight. i weighed myself and turns out, i lost a good 3kg. So i have been beefing up my nutrition intake to get the results i want.
So there you have it. Some simple tips to follow to ensure that you always see the results you want. Don't be insane and do the same thing over and over again, while expecting a different result. The same applies for life as well. If you are not happy with your job or your salary or anything out there, make it a point to do or try something different to get a different result. If you don't like your job, get a new job. To get a new job, you need to update your CV and start sending them out. If you are not sending out your CVs even though your are extremely unhappy with your job, then... well you know what i am getting at. :-)
So stand up and do something different. Yes it will feel weird and different, but only for awhile. eventually you will get used to it. If you really want something bad enough, then its worth all that discomfort. As usual, look forward to hearing your comments.