Picture this scene;
It’s Monday 6am and your alarm just went off. You have a session with your personal trainer at 6:30am and it’s a cold July morning. Your first thought is: How can I get out of this session? You grab your phone, text a blatant lie to your PT about feeling sick or not having had enough sleep. You then stay up, browse on your phone for 45min, eat breakfast and head off to work. Later that day you’re questioning your actions. 'Why did I do that? I’m paying for these sessions.'
The following week you do the same thing. Only now the excuses are coming to you far more easily. So again, you ask yourself 'Why? Why do I keep cancelling my session? I have goal to achieve. A goal that I actually do want.'
If you’re asking yourself these questions then you’re definitely not enjoying training anymore. But it’s not for the reasons most people think;
'I just don’t want it enough anymore.'
'I'm too busy right now.'
'Not really feeling it anymore.'
Sorry, no. The reason you're looking for ways out of your training is more often not any of the above. It's much more simple than that. You’re bored. Plain, old, simple bored.
So why are you bored with your training?
The reason is simple; you’ve been doing the same thing in your sessions for too long and just like anything in life, if you do the same thing for too long you acclimatise and then get bored. Variety is the spice of life people!
There are many different styles of training and all of them can benefit your goals in different ways. There is a good chance you’re stuck in a plateau because you just haven’t considered other options or pathways to get you to the goal you're after.
I myself was guilty of this, believing only heavy weight training could get me stronger and build more muscle. However, once I flipped the script and tried out some different styles of training, I saw more progress and actually sustained fewer injuries than previously. It helped me realise how important it is to change things up with my training from time to time.
Are you like me and have you been doing the same type of training for years on end?
Same old weight training? Still using running as your main mode of training after 10 years of it? Still cycling your week between pilates and walking, pilates and walking, pilates and walking? It might be time to step outside of your comfort zone and try something new.
Animal flow, splitting strength programs, boxing, kick boxing, mobility, upper body, lower body, core focussed, higher reps lighter weight, lower reps heavier weight, super sets, drop sets, agonist sets, antagonist sets, tri sets, circuits, Tabata, suspension training, plyometrics, sprint training, hill training, cycling, rowing, ergometer, calisthenics and the list goes on. There are literally hundreds of different types of physical training available to us.
How long has it been since you tried something new?
Think about the last time you did. You were probably both a little nervous and excited at the same time. Maybe your palms got a bit sweaty as you were unsure if you would succeed at this new activity. Then maybe you realised that the new activity was pretty hard and you weren't very good at it straight away! But, did you give up? Did you throw your hands up in anger or defeat? Or did you knuckle down and try to master the new challenge?
This is one of the fundamentals of training; you can’t do the same thing forever. Bodies and minds acclimatise, stop responding and get bored.
So, if you've mastered your base exercises (dead, squat, push, pull, press) now is the time to start taking a more varied approach to your training and time to have a deep and meaningful chat with your trainer about exactly what you want with your training. Your trainer has vast knowledge of different exercises and training techniques so it's time to start utilising that plethora to get you out of your slump.
What is it that you want to learn from your trainer? Not need, WANT. It's the WANT that will keep you interested. Ask your trainer if they can devote a few sessions to teaching you the new techniques or methods that interest you rather than working you at the same old stuff again. Yes, your heart rate may not be as elevated in these learning sessions but it also might! and you will definitely be learning so your brain will be stimulated thus ending your boredom.
And btw, you can learn and sweat at the same time.
A good way to cater for this is to split your sessions up. If you’re doing two or more sessions each week it’s really easy. Just use one of your weekly sessions as a learning session, then your other session/s to crank up the pace or the weight again to get your endorphin hit. You could also devote more time to using group sessions, or use your own time to do a prescribed circuit or add an extra session in whilst you are learning in your PT sessions. It’s really up to you how you do it. Just make sure to heed your trainers advice when doing this.
Hopefully this helps you get out of your boredom-rut and gets you pumped about your training program again. If not… I hear sky-diving is not boring!
See you round the studio :)