I typically go to the gym with a plan. I know what I want to do each day in order to achieve my goal of muscle endurance, core strength and flexibility.
My plan includes the moves I’ll do in my workout that day-including the type and length of my cardio, my weight-training moves,as well as the number of sets and reps for each move.
If I accomplish what I wanted to do each day, I’ll leave drained but satisfied. I’d have had a good workout. I’d have done what I needed to do.
But I wouldn’t have done what I could do.
I end each of my post with the admonition: Challenge yourself!
You’ll only do that if you push yourself beyond what you want to do and do what you can do.
That’s in the gym–and in life.
In the gym it means occasionally scrapping the plan and pushing yourself beyond it.
For me that means doing five sets of a move rather that three; and sets of 15-12-10-12-15 (or to failure) rather than my usual 12-10-8.
Or I might add some extra weight-more than I’ve done before.
Or perhaps I raise the level on my cardio machine, or go longer.
Not surprisingly, my can workouts are more gratifying (and draining) than my want workouts.
You make bigger gains when you push your body beyond what you want to do and towards what it can do.
You make more gains in life, too, when you push yourself beyond what you want to do and learn what you can do.
What you want to do on your job, in your relationships, anywhere, if you’re lucky, will be satisfying and gratifying enough.
Imagine how you’ll feel when you learn what you can do.
Roy S. Johnson is the founder of Fit! Live! Win! and former Editor-in-Chief of Men’s Fitness. Fit! Live! Win! was created to be the only workout buddy you’ll ever need, to help you challenge yourself with new workout moves, training regiments and eating strategies from the best trainers and nutritionists in the business. For more information about Roy S. Johnson and Fit! Live! Win! visit www.FitLiveWin.wordpress.com.