Archive for February, 2013

7 Steps to a Slimmer Swimsuit

It is almost time for Spring Break. That means it is almost swimsuit season. For some people, I have been told by the federal government to never wear a swimsuit in public after my last appearance. You blind 10 people and everybody makes a big fuss. Whatever...
  So, for other people who are looking to get toned and ready for their bathing suits I have a way to get you ready. It is 7 simple (not to be confused with easy) steps that if you commit to them will get you ready in a hurry. As a bonus, it has some great workouts you can do any time any place to speed up the process. Just in case you don't have an awesome boot camp to attend.   I need some help from you though. It is a goal of mine to help as many people as possible reach their goals and improve their health. If you would like a copy, all you have to do is have a friend e-mail me at and say they would like to begin receiving the newsletter. When they sign up, both you and the friend get a copy of the 7 steps special report.   Not only that, but I am also willing to sweeten the deal. The person who gets the most of their friends to sign up, will win a copy of a brand new program I am putting together. In this program you will learn:  
  • Which whole foods to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • How to set your goals to maximize success
  • Why “diets” don’t work
  • The dangers of restrictive diets
  • Ten ways to avoid the overweight trap
  • Medical conditions and weight gain
  • Mindset tips to supercharge your effort and lead to success
  • Special Bonus - 3 weeks of done-for-you meal plans and recipes

Thank you for helping me reach my goals, I really appreciate it!

The 9th Challenge- Affirm Yourself

Ok, we've had some tough challenges that you may not have been able to accomplish. You may be getting down on yourself. Snap out of it! Time to turn things around. Last week you picked it up a notch in your workouts, now it is time to pick it up a notch in your mind.
So this may be a little touchy feely sounding, but the next challenge is about affirmations. The most famous affirmation I can recall is Stuart Smalley from Saturday Night Live.
Stuart Smalley's famous quote
Stuart Smalley's famous quote
Remember that? Good times.
That was poking fun at affirmations, but they are a helpful tool. Whatever you give attention to grows. A mentor of mine always says "Where the mind goes, grows."
This can be good or bad. Ever had a stressful problem that you can't get off your mind and the problem seems to get bigger every minute? Thoughts become reality, so you gotta encourage the good thoughts.
So how do you go about starting an affirmation? Make a list of the top things you want to improve in your life. Next to each one write a few positive thoughts in the present tense. For instance if you wanted to improve your memory you could write:
-I have the ability to learn quickly
-I am in control of what I remember
-I am calm when I learn
-My brain absorbs knowledge like a Shamwow
So you got them all written out, now what? You have a few options.
1. Speak to the mirror. Speak with passion and conviction like you are trying to convince yourself. Because that is what you are doing!
2. Write them down and look at them several times a day just like your goals
3. Sing or chant them. Not recommended at work.
4. You can always go with some audio programs to get the affirmation into your subconscious mind.
So your challenge this week is two-fold. After you read this, write out your self affirmation. The rest of the week, the challenge is to do your affirmation twice a day using number 1 and 3. Night and day, breakfast and lunch, however you want to do it.
The other half of the challenge is to eliminate the negative self talk. I sound like a broken record about getting rid of negativity, but it is very important to do so. Don't ever talk bad about yourself! What good does that do? Replace things like "I'm no good at that." with "I'm not great at that now, but I'm getting better." I know this stuff is a little much, but all the cool kids are doing it! It's free, doesn't take much time, and it just might work. What's to lose?
Cliff notes version:
1. Say good things to yourself
2. Don't talk bad about yourself

Quick and Dirty Workout (no weights required)


What you do in your leisure time can kill you


Lemur me alone, I'm watching the game

Most people can do pretty good during the week. You get into a routine, you do your scheduled exercise program, and you handle your business. Then the weekend comes and it is laying on the couch surrounded by pizza boxes and bon bons. Maybe that’s just me...
A study in the Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine found that people who were sedentary during their leisure time (watching TV, video games, computer time, etc...) were 3 times more likely to die of cardiovascular disease. Pretty scary right?
So I want to help you out. Here is the official Joe Martin Stay Healthy on the Weekend Plan. 
1. Get 30 minutes of fun, physical activity in on Saturday and Sunday
Just get out and move for 30 straight minutes, preferably outdoors. Fresh air and sunshine do a body more good than you think. It can be a walk, a bike ride, chasing your kids (sometimes not classified as fun), etc...
If it rains, I will even count some Wii or Kinect video games. I want you to be as active as possible, as often as possible. You can’t just count on your workouts to reach your goals, you have to lead an overall healthier life. If you exercise for 5 hours a week, sleep for 8 hours a night, that still leaves 107 hours for you to make or break your fitness program.
Find some healthy ways to fill in those gaps. Stand up more at work, park farther away, use the stairs. Little things become big things when you do them consistently.
2. Make better, bad choices 
Choose the cheeseburger, small fries, and small drink over the Big Mac with Super Sized Drink and Fries, apple pie (Now with free stent for your heart!) Drink 3 55 calorie beers over the 6 margaritas. Choose the guy who is unemployed and missing some important teeth over the guy on Death Row.
3. Try to get it right 90% of the time
If you can do that, especially on the weekend, you will be doing better than most. Don’t beat yourself up when you don’t get every meal perfectly balanced with vitamins and nutrients. Pizzas happen, alcohol happens (a lot on the weekend), just don’t make it happen all the time.
4. Eliminate the negative self talk
Why would you ever talk bad about yourself? That’s other people’s jobs! Never talk bad about yourself, it doesn’t do you or anybody else any good. Thoughts become reality, so pick the good ones.
5. Use Sunday as a day to prep your food for the week
Chop up vegetables and fruit. Bake, grill, or Crock Pot a large amount of healthy, lean proteins. Prepare healthy snacks for the week. The more you do to set yourself up for success, the better your results will be. You know how crazy the week gets, take advantage of this time to help yourself out. Think about what you tend to eat when there is nothing prepared. Not good is it? Having systems in place beats having will power.

Dark Chocolate Chunk Muffins Recipe

Awhile back I sent out a recipe for a healthier version of the brownie. Since I got a lot of positive responses, I thought I would send out another recipe for my fellow sweet tooth peeps.
This is a recipe I got from Prograde Nutrition for Dark Chocolate Chunk Muffins. Be ready for a few ingredients that might seem a little strange, but will all work out in the end.
Here is how to create magic.
Preheat your oven to 350, then mix: •    2 eggs •    1 c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk •    1 c. shredded zucchini (peeled before shredding) •    1 tsp. vanilla •    3 tbsp. agave syrup Whisk well then add: •    1/2 c.  Quinoa (uncooked, dry; preferably red) •    1 tsp. baking soda •    1/2 c. gluten free pancake mix •    1 tsp cocoa powder •    1 1/2 scoops Prograde Chocolate Protein powder
  Blend more till smooth.  If desired, add 1/2-3/4  c. dark chocolate chips or chunks.   Note: Your batter will be very wet.  Pour the batter into muffin tins, bake 'till they spring when you touch them, about 15-20 minutes.  Let them rest on a counter for 10-15 minutes to cool. The quinoa becomes nutty and delicious within the muffins.  These are best served cooled. Makes 1 Dozen.   Nutrition Facts: (per 1 muffin) Calories: 86 Protein: 4 gms Carbohydrates: 13 gms Fat: 2 gms

The 8th Challenge- Pick it up a notch

  Last week the challenge was to start performing maintenance on your body to keep it in proper working order. Now that we have the body fine tuned, it's time to pick it up a notch.   Intensity is usually the difference between people who get results and those who just get through their workouts. Look back at how some of your recent workouts have gone.   Could you have gone further? Gone faster? Lifted heavier? Done a few more repetitions?   Just a few random examples:   Have you been running 2 miles? Push it up to 2.5 miles.   The challenge this week is to pick it up a notch! Have you been running 2 miles in 20 minutes? Now try to do 2 miles in 19 minutes.   Have you been using the same weight for months? It is time to go heavier.   Have you been doing the same amount of repetitions every workout? Time to do more.   The main thing I want you to do is look back at your last few workouts. What gave out first, your body or your mind? The mind can take the body places, you never thought it could go.   Before your next workout, set a goal that you are going to reach firmly in your mind. Do not stop until you get there. Do not settle for average, do not settle for ok. You are stronger, faster, and fitter than you are giving yourself credit for.   Go prove me right, I know you can do it.

Healthy Valentine’s Day! (Partner Workout, Dessert Recipe, and Bonus Article)

You know the old saying "Couples that sweat together stay together"? Whoever came up with that saying was not married to a trainer. Little advice for any trainer looking to give tips to their significant other. Just skip the advice and go straight to being quiet. Saves you from the whole "Stop correcting me!" Just trust me on that.
So just in case you are looking for a workout to do with a partner, it just so happens that I have one.
Partner Workout
For partner exercises 1-3 each partner will do their exercise for one minute, then switch exercises, and do that exercise for one minute. For exercise 4 and 5, there is no exercise pairing. Go through the entire list 3 times, for a full body workout in a fairly short amount of time.
1A. Plank jacks- In the pushup position, you will jump your feet out like jumping jacks. Make sure to keep your hips down.
1B. Plank hold- Hold the pushup position or hold the same position on your forearms. Don't let your hips sag down or let your hips go up in the air.
2A. Squats- feet shoulder width apart, push your hips back, sit back and away from your knee caps, making sure to keep your knees out and don't let them cave in.
2B. Seal Jacks- Start with your arms and feet out wide. Jump your hands and feet together.
3A. Jumping jacks- like what you think.
3B. Flutter kicks- lay on your back, sit with your hands on the side of your butt cheeks. Kick your feet barely off the ground like you are swimming.
4. High five pushups- Set up in the pushup position head to head arms length apart from your partner. Lower yourself down at the same time as you come up you will high five your partner at the top of the pushup. Alternate hands each time, feel free to do fist bumps instead.
5. Leg throw downs- One partner lays on the ground while the other partner stands at their head. The partner on the ground will reach back and grab the standing partner's ankles to steady themselves. The partner on the ground will raise both legs up at the same time. The standing partner will lovingly throw the feet back down. The partner on the ground will control their legs and do not let them touch the ground, then raise the feet back up again.
Grilled Banana Splits Recipe
4 ripe bananas 2 Tbsp chocolate chips 1/2 cup non-fat, frozen vanilla yogurt 4 tsp chopped walnuts Directions: 1- Preheat oven to 400 degrees 2- Place each banana on its side on a piece of foil. Cut a slit lengthwise across the top. Leave the skin attached. 3- Push 1/2 Tbsp chocolate chips into the slit of each banana. 4- Wrap the bananas with the foil, leaving the top open. Grill or bake about 15 minutes or until the chocolate melts. 5- Loosen the foil and press the bananas open a little. 6- Top each banana with 2Tbsp of the frozen yogurt and sprinkle with 1tsp walnuts.
Extra article 
I wrote an article for Our Valley Events that covers some other tips on taking care of your own health on Valentine's Day. Yes I am a little bit strange.
Hope you have a great day!

The 7th Challenge-Body Maintenance


Moving on from the Eliminating Liquid Calories Challenge from last week.   Ok here is your challenge for this week. Take care of your muscles, joints, etc... Now is the time to learn of the healing powers of foam rollers. If you don't have one or access to one it's not a huge deal, but these things really can help. Many people describe it as the poor man's sports massage. You can use it before a workout, after a workout, or just on its own. The important thing is to do it.   Just about any gym will have them laying around or you can buy one for yourself. I use the 3 foot rounded roller from Perform Better because it will last forever. 10 slow rolls on any of your muscles that feel tight or sore. Should only take 5-10 minutes.   This video shows a few techniques you can use. Not the highest quality, but it works.
Foam roller techniques to reduce stiff and sore muscles
Foam roller techniques to reduce stiff and sore muscles
  That's the first part. The second part is stretching. I want you to stretch for 10 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes at night. A recent study found that people who stretched their hamstrings for 30 seconds before even getting out of bed increased hamstring flexibility by 27% in just 6 weeks. That's pretty cool.   So I want you to stretch your hamstrings, hips, quadriceps, upper back, arms, chest, calves, lower back, neck, and glutes every day. Spend 1 minute on each muscle I listed, twice per day. There are literally hundreds of stretches you can do for these muscles so you may have to do a little research, but if you get stuck or need clarification on something let me know.   Here is a good link to check out for help with stretches: Stretching Exercises   The last thing you need to do strengthen and stretch your ankle and foot muscles. We are going to do that 3 ways, two of them require you to be barefoot. Do #1 and #3 when you have time. Do #2 as often as you can. That sounds bad. Do the second one as often as you can.   1. Draw each letter of the alphabet with your foot. Sit in a chair (but not for more than 15 minutes) and one foot at a time draw each letter of the alphabet. This will make your feet and ankles stronger and more flexible.   2. Take your shoes off! We spend too much time in these highly engineered shoes that allow us to run super long distances, walk all day long, etc... It makes it so the muscles in the feet don't have to work as hard. My personal opinion, that is why we have so many runners that end up with serious overuse injuries.   3. Pick up marbles with your feet. Same deal with feet being in shoes all day, your toes aren't used to push off the ground so they just kind of sit there useless. Put those fellas to work. Pick up 10 marbles with each foot.   Foam roll, stretch, and strengthen your ankles and feet. This one may make the biggest difference on how your body feels. This can help eliminate a lot of that stiffness, soreness, and tightness we all have.  

Health and life lessons from a puppy

Just going to be up front and let you know this was mainly an excuse to show you a picture of my new puppy Shug. Feel free to admire his cuteness.
If you've ever had a puppy, you know it is much like having a baby. Lot of cuteness, a lot of work, lot of bodily functions on display.
We've had all of that, but there are also a few things that we could all learn from raising a puppy to help increase the enjoyment you get in life.
1. Attack the day
When that little guy wakes up, he is ready to roll! Right away he wants to charge outside and run around. Makes me a little jealous to be honest. He is mainly ready to attack his food and the bush outside, but still. When your alarm goes off, hit the ground running and don't give yourself time to realize how tired you are. Have something you look forward to doing immediately after you wake up.
I get fired up and excited in the morning because every day I have the opportunity to change someone's life. I go over the workout for that day at boot camp, respond to posts on Facebook, and answer questions and provide solutions for my health coaching clients. I am very lucky to love what I do, find something that works for you.
2. Listen to the warning signs
This is one I learned real quick. When the puppy goes anywhere near the door, you better get to stepping and let him out. Or face the consequences.
Aren't we like that with our health? Most people will not start an exercise program until their doctor tells them to, until they are really far out of shape or overweight, until they realize they can't keep up with their kids playing without gasping for breath.
You didn't get like that overnight. There were signs that you chose to ignore. I've been there too. I didn't just wake up one day 50 pounds overweight, it was a steady climb of bad food and not enough exercise. What signs are you ignoring?
3. Have a routine
The body likes to be in a routine as does the puppy. Both like to know what to expect and they respond favorable to a schedule. Eating, drinking, sleeping, exercising, etc... at the same time every day will help your body respond better. On the flip side, having an erratic schedule can wreak havoc on your system.
I did an internship at a tire plant when I was in college. The factory workers worked 12 hour shifts, one from 6AM-6PM and one 6PM-6AM. Then every few months, the AM shift would work 24 hours straight, and then the two shifts would swap up. Job accidents, heart attacks, and job unhappiness all increased rapidly until someone stepped in and put a stop to this crazy idea.
4. Be enthusiastic
Don't you like being around people with boundless enthusiasm? Doesn't it help you feel more energized? Tomorrow is not promised so we might as well soak every bit of life out of today. If you can't be enthusiastic about your workouts every time that's ok! But if you never look forward to your workouts, might be time to change it up. There are so many options in fitness, why choose one you don't like?
5. Forgive and forget
Thankfully the little fellow forgives me when I accidentally step on him, yell at him, or put him in his crate at night. No matter what, he will still be glad to see me and excited for another opportunity to hang out. How much better would our health be if we could be like that?
According to the Mayo Clinic, forgiving someone can lead to:
  • Healthier relationships
  • Greater spiritual and psychological well-being
  • Less anxiety, stress and hostility
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Fewer symptoms of depression
  • Lower risk of alcohol and substance abuse
Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go enthusiastically attack my routine of forgiving and checking my warning signs.

Top 10 ways get out of an exercise rut and stay motivated

    Have you gotten to the point in your exercise program where you dread doing it? Has it become like a part-time job? You go put on your gym clothes, go through the motions, and then do it all over again the next day. You aren't getting results, your motivation is very low, and you find exercise to be extremely boring. Sounds like you are in an exercise rut. Here are 10 ways to get out of an exercise rut.   1. Take some time off There is a good chance that if you have been exercising for a long time you will experience burn out. It happens to the best of us, as well as the worst of us. Personally I take a whole week off a few times a year. Now that doesn't mean I sit on the couch eating cake with no pants on. I wear pants most of the time. What I mean is I take a week off from any structured exercise program. I might go for a hike, play basketball, etc... but nothing in the way of planned exercise. Since I am a creature of habit, it usually kills me to take some time off. It is just part of my daily routine that I have been doing for years, so my body does not like it at first when I take the week off. But after the week off, I am extremely excited to start back and those little nagging injuries that tend to come on with constant exercise start to fade away.   2. Remember why you started exercising Why are you doing all this? Wouldn't life be easier if you just sat on the couch, ate ice cream, and watched The Biggest Loser? At some time in your life you decided that exercise was something you needed to do. Think back why you started it. That reason may have changed along the way and you didn't even realize it. I first started exercising to get bigger and stronger for football. Then I started exercising to get rid of the bigger (fatter) me I had built. From there I have had different goals that have been aesthetic and performance based.   When your goals match your training style you will be much more successful. One of my goals a few years ago was to deadlift 450 pounds. If I had gone out every day and jogged to reach this goal, it would not have happened. If your goal is to drop body fat/weight and you have not addressed the nutrition aspect of your training, you will not reach your goal. Your goals need to line up with your exercise plan. There is something very comforting knowing all you have to do is follow a specific plan and you will reach your goal.   Also, you need to remember what emotion motivated you to get started. When I first started losing weight, my motivation was pretty simple. Stop being a fat guy and never turn back. If I ever feel myself slacking or need motivation, all I have to do is pull up a picture of myself 50 pounds ago. What will do it for you? Are you tired of begin sick and tired? Are you embarrassed by your body? Emotions are very powerful motivator, I recommend you tap into yours.   3. Try something new People who are avid exercisers are very susceptible to getting in a rut because they tend to stick to just one thing. Whether it be biking, running, strength training, or any other mode of exercise they tend to stick to that one thing. Why are you pigeonholing yourself into one workout for the rest of your life. Your body adapts very quickly to whatever you are doing.   Change it up! Variety is the spice of life, go get some flavor in your fitness. Just came up with that phrase so feel free to use it. There are so many fitness options to choose from, surely you can find one you enjoy. Or you can even change the way you are doing the exercise you enjoy. Try changing the exercises, amount of weight, rest breaks, speed of the lifts, etc... This is one of the single most important things you can do to stay out of a rut. You will gain two major benefits, besides staying out of an exercise rut. The first benefit will be a reduction in overuse injuries. If you continually pound the pavement as a runner with no other type of training, chances are very good you will get injured. But if you mix in some other modes of exercise such as strength training or biking you will save yourself some pain. Also, your performance will get better by adding in other activities. Take the aforementioned runner who begins strength training to supplement his or her running program. By strengthening the entire body, this person will become a more efficient and faster runner with less chance of breaking down. Who wouldn't want that?   4. Work on small goals It is very common for people to quit or slack off on their exercise program because of unrealistic expectations. Their goal of "Lose 50 pounds in January", did not happen gain this year so that must mean that exercise does not work for them. Break it up into small goals, starting with performance goals. If you have been sedentary, completing a goal of "Exercise 3 times per week in January" would be a huge accomplishment.  Often it is not one thing that will make you successful, but a combination of several smaller things. A fitness business professional named Pat Rigsby likes to say "Small hinges, swing big doors." Those little changes that may seem insignificant, can be crucial as you go forward.   Accomplishing these smaller goals also helps you stay motivated. If your goal is to lose 50 pounds in January and you lost 5, you would not be happy because your goal weight seem so far away. But if your goal was to lose the recommend 1-2 pounds per week, you are right where you need to be. Come up with a list of smaller goals made up of performance goals (take X amount of time off your mile run), behavioral goals(exercising X amount per week), and aesthetic goals (lose X amount of inches, weight, pant sizes).   5. Use visual cues Are you a Pinterest fan? It is the fasting growing social media site in the world. You know why? People respond very powerfully to visual cues. These can be pictures of someone's body you admire, things you want to accomplish, etc... but one of the simplest and most effective things you can use is the humble note card.  Those simple 3 x 5 note cards that you used to fumble through when you did speeches in school. Write your goals, motivational sayings, etc... and put them on note cards where you will see them every day. Sounds simple and maybe even a little silly, but it works. This will keep your goals and aspirations at the forefront of your mind to help keep you motivated.   Along these lines, you can also do a vision board. A vision board might sound a little too Oprahish for some people, but have seen all that Oprah has been able to accomplish? A vision board is basically like a school project. You need poster board (or if you are going dance, some cork board), pictures, and glue. For the pictures you want to make sure they are three things.   Personal-You can't use my board and I can't use yours. My vision board might be filled with dudes sporting rat tails that I am coveting. You want that? Probably not, but I don't know you that well.   Emotionally charged- The pictures should really speak to you and spur you to action every time you look at it. Are there any pictures you can think of right now that do that for you?   Strategically placed- Just like with the note cards, you should put your vision board somewhere where you will see it multiple times EVERY day.   Vison boards are all based on making the law of attraction work. The law of attraction in a nut shell is whatever it is you consistently think (positively or negatively) will come to fruition. I believe in it personally, but I am a naturally positive person any way. When was the last time things went really bad for you when you were thinking positively? It's pretty rare, turn that frown upside down kid it's going to be ok.   6. Read a book, blog, magazine etc... This is a great way to find people who are going through what you are. What did they do to get through it? Steal ideas, share ideas, adapt ideas to your own situation. There is a wealth of information on every subject imaginable out there, use it to your benefit. You can get a lot of it for free. Or you can buy exercise books to get into a new routine. Get a fitness magazine for new workouts, recipes, motivating stories, etc... Pick up a healthy nutrition cook book to help you with the all important nutrition piece of the puzzle. This is something small you can do that really helps with new ideas, as well as keeping your health at the forefront of your mind.   7. Exercise with a friend, group, team, or club The three main things you will experience when exercising with others are: social opportunities; accountability; and motivation. One of the most consistent comments I get from my boot campers is that we are like a family. People have made lifelong friendships in the class. There is just no better way to bond, than through burpees I guess. When you can get together to sweat and smile it really is a magical combination that becomes addicting.   When you are by yourself, you had a hard day at work, didn't sleep good last night, and you are driving to the gym it gets very easy for that car to direct itself on home. But if you had to meet someone for that workouts, whether it is a trainer or a workout partner, your chances of skipping that workout just went way down. Accountability is an absolute key to exercise success.   The group or partner atmosphere also gives you that extra boost to keep going, dig a little deeper, and give it your best. About 90% of the time I workout by myself in my garage. Depending on what time of year it is, the garage is either really cold or boiling hot. In Alabama we have spring for 6 days and then it picks a lane, hot or cold. There are many days when the last thing I want to do is go slave through a workout. There are some benefits to the garage workout. I can wear what I want, being barefoot doesn't freak anyone but my wife out, I can  blast my Justin Bieber shame free, use chalk when I life weights, throw things, etc...   It's a pretty extensive list of reasons I like to workout in there, BUT there are also a lot of distractions. Luckily I am a fairly disciplined person and  also have experienced one thing over and over.   Just start the workout.   No matter what you feel like, how much you are dreading it, just start, and you will feel better afterwards.  If you are not the type of person that can stick to a workout AND give it the proper intensity, you need to seek out a group or a partner.   8. Take a power nap To be fair, this is my solution to everything in life. Your cholesterol is high? Man I would take a nap if I were you.  You got fired? Little snooze will clear that right up. Just understand that I wasn't always like this. The years of getting up way before the sun has caught up to me and now I am a self-taught, napping expert. There are days when I can't find the energy to put my shoes on, much less work out.   WebMD even backs my napping with science in this article Nap Benefits. There is even a gym in North Carolina that offers napping classes. For real, Nap Classes at the gym.   I won't bore you with all of my personal napping techniques and tips, just know they are spectacular. I may write a book on napping one day as my way of giving back to the people. But I will tell you that anything over 30 minutes and you will wake up unsure who you are, what country you are in, and why your pants are way over there. Maybe the last part is just me. If you have 5-30 minutes to spare, try a power nap before you workout for a quick mental and physical recharge.   9. Competition Some people just thrive on competition. Whether it is in a race or in the group setting we mentioned earlier, some people will completely change and come alive in competition. I am that type of person. There are very few things I hate worse than losing. It is something I've had to really check myself on because I can take it too far. There is absolutely nothing wrong with healthy competition.   You know what is a competition I love watching? The one-sided competition. This is when only one person knows there is a competition going on. For instance, have you ever been on a treadmill and you see the person next to you keep glancing over at your console and pushing buttons? Then you increase your speed, they increase their speed. Has this ever happened to you? Did it make you bump up your speed just a tiny bit? Sometimes it takes a little competition to get you out of your comfort zone.   Whatever the competition is, use it to your advantage. Strive to be stronger, faster, fitter, and more flexible than you are now. If you are going to try to do something, why not be the best at it YOU can?   10. Shoot for progress, not perfection You are going to mess up, you are going to miss workouts, you are going to eat fast food. We all do! Even that buff guy of girl you think has a perfect body. It's going to happen, so it's no big deal! Here's the main thing to take home from this. Do not let a slip become a fall. What I mean by that is, when you miss up it is not the end of the world. Pick up where you left off and keep moving. Too many people get stuck by focusing on a mistake rather than remembering all that they have accomplished. Even if are only moving forward one step at a time, you are still moving forward. Keep it up and you will get where you are going eventually.   Action step- Pick out one or two of these and start using them TODAY. There is no way you should be dreading your workouts, so find a way to look forward to them.
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