I received a mail recently from a guy complimenting my physique and asking what my secret was. The reply is at the bottom of this blog.
The quick answer would be that the toolbox I use for life which includes my health and fitness is more full of useful tools than others possess. The truth is more like that the tools are available for all to use but too many of us persist in using tools that are not giving us the results that we want. So we adopt one of the many labels on offer – runner – cross-fitter – powerlifter – bodybuilder – even just “a normal trainer” is an adopted label. Lesson one – resist labels – keep moving and they will not stick to you or the self-designated labellers will be wrong. They usually are. If any label fits well you have stood still for too long!
Each of us is unique and if we choose to take up the challenge we are all our own life experiment.
When I work with any new gym buddy(client) I always let them know that my job is to help them find tools for progress whatever that may be for them and it is their job to decide which tools are fit for their purpose and which are not. There is nothing that is beyond consideration and if you have lived a full and varied life your toolbox should have plenty of variety and fulfil all of your needs and keep growing with new developments. This process is never-ending. If you workout in a gym! No workout should be the same as the last. This is your personal physique and fitness laboratory – use it wisely. Bands, bars, dumbells, barbells, bodyweight etc. all are valid inclusions into your toolbox. There is NO RIGHT WAY! ONLY WAY! OR BEST WAY! – Try them all – mix them up – invent your own.
The Only Question You Will Need
As you progress there is one question that is good to ask when you are creating your self.
Is what I am doing now compatible with the future I want to create?
I train early in the morning and most morning there was a guy in the gym and he was training very heavy – maximum dead-lifts and I even had to rescue him one morning when he got stuck under a bench press. We became friendly and I asked him what he was aiming at with his training. His answer was that he wanted to improve his physique all around – ripped and muscular. I then asked him if his routine was the best or even a good way to get what he wanted. In appearance you probably would not guess that he was in the gym every morning at the break of dawn. What I was getting at was that his workouts were incompatible with his goals. The result? He still trains his ego on certain lifts but has diversified and upped his reps in many situations and at least 50% of his workout has become conducive to getting where he is aiming. His experiment is in the early stages and his toolbox is growing. It is easy to identify with being strong and spending time on ego training BUT that will go nowhere and unless you are entering power-lifting or strongman competitions I would suggest leaving your ego at the door and aligning your training to your goals. I have witnessed guys that have gone nowhere in decades because of this mentality. On the plus side if you train with variety and reps and many different methods your strength will increase. It does not need to be a priority for most of us. But it is a nice little by-product to a varied routine
Personal observation is the first required skill in creating your own toolbox – YouTube viewing with an open mind is another rich vein of possibilities – pick bits from all over you will never need to adhere to one theory – try them – don’t pay for any unless you are convinced that they will somehow give you what you cannot create for yourself. You will eventually discover that nobody knows you like you know yourself and you will create tools that can never be bought, at least not in one place masquerading as the one true way. Don’t be afraid to leave your comfort zone. And the old tools become new again further down the line. How cool is that?
Finally take back control of your exposure to information – search for what you want rather than allow bombardment from everywhere. Everybody is an expert! But only you can conduct your life experiment. Good luck and keep looking here I will do my best to deliver some outside the box ideas and help you grow your toolbox.
This is my personal Philosophy for life in general – there are 3 simple ideals that I use to keep myself and anyone else on track – in the gym or anywhere else.
- Faith – The first is to have faith that the future will be better in one way or another- with the acceptance that the opposite is possible also – the presence of the opposite is the motivating factor to action.
- Self -Creation (individual) – A lifelong commitment to getting better
- Community Responsibility(communal) – A sincere responsibility to who we consider “US” and who we consider “THEM” – The Utopian goal being considering everyone that we see as “US”.
I will further discuss Pragmatic Flexarianism with some personal examples of how it works in everyday reality in the next blog and ongoing.
My reply to John’s mail.
Thanks for your kind words.
There is no simple answer to your question.
I don’t do online training but I do try to help as many people as possible find a way through the information overload we are all subject to daily, if not minute by minute.
The answer is a big picture answer and the secrets are all in plain sight. It is a matter of creating your own personal unique “toolbox” to use in your life and this instance for your fitness and physique needs. Although it will carry you much further. My body is a result of a flexible toolbox and a flexible attitude added to a curiosity for innovation and experimentation.
You are one of a kind and your life is your experiment in every facet. Following the herd will get you limited results – forging your own way will give you personalised results and a deep connection to all that you do. If you do not connect to something then maybe there is another way. There is always another way.
As a result of your email, I will work on a blog for this week that will help guide you and the many others lost in a sea of information.
If you just click to follow my blog site – ideaorgies.com – you should get the latest blog when I have written it this week.
Thanks for the inspiration for this blog.
If you are wondering what is in it for me – This is what I do. I think and I write – I have no alternative agendas. I will tell you what I have learned and you can develop your Philosophy for life that will give you whatever you require at whatever stage of life you at currently. At no time will my blog aver try to make you pay for my wisdom. The only thing I have planned is a voluntary donation button that I will introduce in the future.