I know a personal trainer who is also a competitive bodybuilder. He has lots of clients who train with him every week. Still, you can’t help but notice an obvious lack of visible progress for many of his clients – especially the ladies.
One of his clients is extremely loyal and disciplined. She actually runs 2 to 3 miles to her training sessions at the gym as her warm-up, and then runs back home. She puts an incredible amount of spirit and effort into her workouts. She is constantly working and sweating, with an incredible will to endure an almost endless array of repetitious resistance exercises with little to no rests. And so her workouts continue in the same manner, week after week, month after month. I have witnessed her weekly training sessions for the better part of a year – with no visible physical improvement.
The problem is, she looks exactly the same as she did 6 months, or even a year before. She works so hard because she is trying to lose 15 to 20 extra pounds. I know one definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. But, this woman is very smart. She is an intelligent and extremely determined professional lady. It’s not just her though, the same situation is repeated every day many times over in gyms across the country.
I believe people persist in this situation for a couple of reasons:
- First, they look to their physically perfect trainers and make a big error in logic. They connect the near perfect physicality of these folks with the veracity and effectiveness of their methods they use on their clients.
- Second, they blame themselves and therefore look at their workouts as some sort of punishment or strange “act of contrition” for not being better physically (like their trainers)
What most folks who have really buff trainers don’t realize is that these folks spend an inordinate amount of time in and around gyms and working out. This is how they make their living. In the same way that we go to work every day at our professions – exercise is what they do. Therefore, the idea that we can use their methods to get into the same shape as they are is almost entirely illusory. Further, many of these trainers and fitness people we emulate compete in figure or bodybuilding contests, entailing all kinds of specialized dietary, dehydration, and supplement protocols. Thus, this illusion becomes even grander. The carrot is firmly on the end of the stick. For us, their methods are impractical and ineffective.
Back to the lady who was training so hard. I asked her once about her diet and I received the answer I almost always get: “we eat really well – lots of whole grains, and almost everything is organic”. In other words, her process of elimination had removed food as a possible reason as to why she could not get rid of those extra pounds. Unfortunately, the trainer concurred.
I had been in the same position myself, years before. I spent up to 3 hours in the gym lifting weights and then doing long, arduous cardio I finally cut my calories drastically. The more effort, discipline and denial I applied, the tougher it was to get those final pounds off. It didn’t end well. After 4 or 5 months of hell I had completely exhausted myself physically, mentally, and emotionally. I quickly ballooned right up past my starting point in a few short months. It wasn’t until I ignored popular fitness culture ideas that I finally reached my desired physical state, permanently.
The solution to our problems involves understanding and applying the rules of basic human physiology with regard to diet, exercise and building muscle. For anyone struggling with extra pounds, the solution begins with diet. Unfortunately, this information is rarely found in the fitness industry where, “Eat less and do your cardio” are still the default prescriptions. It’s just a shame that this tenacious lady and so many millions like her have to work so hard, spend so much money and waste so much time and effort – only to fail.
If you’re looking for a time tested weight loss diet and exercise plan based on both scientific evidence as well as thousands of years of practice by our ancestors, check out the eco-diet. Follow it and you’ll lose weight, gain muscle and feel better than you have in years.