Ask The Trainer #126 – Sticking With It


I was wondering if I could bother you for some advice. I’m having a very difficult time sticking to my workout routines. It seems that I am continuing to repeat the same mistake. I get going into a routine for a few weeks, begin to see a little bit of results, but then I fall off the wagon and it takes me forever to get back on it again. I keep finding myself falling back to exactly where I’m starting from. Do you have any advice on what I can do to motivate myself to stick with my workout routine and not keep falling off the wagon?



Hi Wayne. The dilemma you continue to find yourself in isn’t unique. I watch countless people perpetually run through this vicious cycle. If you truly expect to obtain meaningful results with your body, then your workouts must be difficult in the sense that you physically push yourself in a challenging way, but not so difficult in the sense that working out feels like a torturous burden.

Don’t buy into the idea you need to spend hours a day working out to acquire an impressive physique. Going to the gym shouldn’t interfere too much with the rest of your life. Remember, you want to be in it for the long haul because that’s when meaningful changes are actualized. If your workouts begin to throw your life out of balance and become inconvenient, you will eventually give up.


This being said, you’re going to want to reevaluate your workout routine and ascertain whether your primary reason for quitting is the impracticality of your workout routine itself, or if it’s because you’re just not taking a serious enough approach to your goal endeavors. I find in most cases people quit because they engage in workout routines that inevitably result in overtraining, which results in fatigue, unsatisfactory results, and often times overuse injuries.

Sometimes less DOES equal more. Throughout the better part of my 30 years of training, I’ve spent under 3 hours per week working out. The fact that my workouts were never a burden allowed me to remain consistent with my training regimen long enough to experience the level of strength and conditioning that I currently have. Remember, impressive results can only be obtained through long term consistency.

Natural trainees who train for 2 hours per day, 6 days per week, typically don’t last very long. Then, if they are lucky and can last for a number of years, inevitably the demands they’re placing on their bodies will result in overtraining syndrome which will limit them to results that are less than satisfying. In other words, they reach a point of diminishing returns where they continue to put in more and more work, yet all that work yields fewer and fewer results. Understandably this is extremely discouraging and would compel just about anyone to give up because it just isn’t worth it to me anymore.

How Serious Are You?

As I previously mentioned, the other significant factor to the equation is this: how serious you are when it comes to obtaining your fitness goals? Generally, the more clearly defined your goals are, the more serious and aggressive you’re going to be pursuing them. In fact, performance psychologists tell us that we will become what we think about. Therefore, you need to cultivate an extremely vivid image in your head of exactly what you want your body to be like. You must then call this imagine to mind immediately when you wake up in the morning, before you work out, while you’re working out, while you’re mowing the lawn, before you go to bed at night, or any other chance you get where you have a few opportune minutes to think about whatever you want.

Furthermore, as you’re working towards your goals there will always be negative forces (which may include family, friends, coworkers, and maybe people at the gym) who attempt to denigrate what you’re trying to do. You must learn to transform this negativity into positive determination. Never allow the negativity from people around you to sabotage your game plan! The mind is the most important and underused tool when it comes to conquering fitness goals. The more you’re able to master your thought process, the greater your chances are of achieving exactly what you’ve set out to accomplish.

Hopefully this explanation helps you make sense of this very common and complex issue. I wish you all the best of success in actualizing your fitness goals!

Prove ‘Em Wrong,
Chad Shaw

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