“Deep breath. You’re almost done! Force a long, slow breath. There is no reason to stop, if you do, you know you will wish that you hadn’t. It’s harder to get going again if you stop. Just push to the end.”
That’s the conversation that goes on in my head when I am working out. It’s my “beast” chat so that I can push to have the best workout possible. You may think I’m kidding. I’m not. Well, there may be some more aggressive dialogue going on but this is the clean synopsis.
Lately, I have been all about shorter, more intense workouts. Basically, workouts that require me give my all if I truly want to call them a workout, and if I want them to be over with sooner rather than later. The most you give, the faster you’re done!
I recently read that people spend 30% of their gym time talking, picking music and trying to decide what exercise to do next… basically they spend 30% of their time waisting time.
Time is just one part of being the beast you can be, being a beast in the gym means having a plan and going forward. Have a goal and going after it. Dedicate each rep, each set, each exercise to that goal… to being a beast.
But that’s just part of beast mode. That’s the part that gets the attention. I won’t be talking about having an efficient workout. I’ll end that point with saying:
Be conscious of your habits and when you’re waisting time. Then, don’t.
It’s Okay To Be A Beastly Woman
Being a beast, isn’t a negative description. It’s a powerful word to define when you show up for a workout and you deliver. You leave everything behind at the door and just focus on what you have to do… something great for your body.
When I say “beast mode” it makes me excited. When I hear someone say, “wow, you’re a beast” I feel like giving a fist pump and proudly saying, “you know what… yes, yes I am!” And so should you.
Beast is not a “manly” description or defeminizing (is that a word?). If anything, it’s the best way to describe the intentions going into what you know will be a tough workout. Not every workout has to be beast-like, but more should be than not!
Thinking like a beast means you’re able to get pumped up without the help of Eye Of The Tiger or Timber (my personal favorite at this moment). Of course those songs can help accentuate your inner beast but they aren’t the ignitor.
Only you can turn beast mode on.
So let’s talk about that… let’s talk about how to flip your switch on!
How To Be The Beast You Can Be
1 – A Workout With A Purpose.
Over the past month, I have devoted myself to regular yoga. It’s changed me in just those 4 weeks. I love that at the beginning of each session, our teacher has us focus on our intention. What is the reason we’re there? What can we devote that time to? She then has us to periodically check in with ourselves in an effort to keep that intention in mind.
I LOVE THIS and have begun to do it with my boot campers. Spending just 2-5 minutes focused on what you want out of the workout can help you quiet the reasons you may not want to workout, and bring out or intensify the reasons you do.
The stronger those ‘I want’ reasons are, the more kick ass of a workout you’ll have.
2 – Almost Done.
Have you ever felt like you were spent? You had nothing left in the tank and suddenly you realized that the timer reads 10 seconds… 10. Just 10 seconds and you’ll be finished! Suddenly, you feel a rush of adrenaline and you are able to give that final 10 seconds everything you have.
Time is a tricky little monster, isn’t it? It has the power to make you feel as if you’re never going to finish and the power to give you a dose of extra energy.
Let’s go with the latter, what do you say? When ever you feel your tank running low, just say (actually say out loud) that you’re almost done. Almost there.
Having that “almost” goal will help you push forward beyond what you that possible.
Or trick yourself and give a definite number… “Come on, just 10 more seconds!”. When that 10 seconds pass, aim for 10 more.
The lying trick… I use time as a way to lie to my clients (don’t tell). When we do plank holds, wall squats, or really any exercise where they’re trying to set a personal record I’ll lie. If I know their own goal is 60-seconds, I will tell them at 60 seconds that they’re only 40 seconds in. 90% of the time this trick leads to success never though possible. Sometimes it’s best to just ignore the clock and go.
3 – Just Do It.
I’ll let Nike say it…
On those other days when you may not be feeling it, just suck it up. Put on your ear phones, and get started.
Go into the workout full throttle and within the first 5-minutes you’ll likely forget all about your hesitation and be in the zone. But, this trick will only work if you go into it fully.
Here’s what I mean. If you go into the workout half-heartedly and then start off slow you won’t give your brain the opportunity to flip the switch from “I don’t want to” to “okay, I’m doing awesome”.
Slow, pity workouts, keeps your mind engaged on the fact that you don’t want to workout. Stay strong, and go in strong! Those first 3 minutes are the hardest and then it’s all downhill!
4 – Think About The Outcome
And finally, be the beast that you can be by thinking about how you’ll feel at the end.
Sometimes, when I run, I want to give up and walk. Or just stop and go home. But then I think of how I’ll feel at the end when I am back home. Disappointed and incomplete.
Picture from when it was warm and lovely out…
Yesterday, I did a kettle bell challenge… I wanted to see if I could perform 100 snatches in 5 minutes. The challenge is from a kettlebell certification that Dan and I are thinking about doing this year. One of the tests is to do 100 snatches in that time frame using a 25 pounder (men use more). So I prepped myself, turning on my timer and got started. The first 40 weren’t too bad! I was changing arms every 10 reps and keeping a steady rhythm. After that, I started to get tired.
What kept me going? Pride. Knowing that if I could do it, I would be one step closer to my kettlebell certification and that i would feel awesome having this mini workout done for the day. Plus, I knew Dan was going to be doing the same challenge later in the day and I wanted us both to be successful.
I finished with 101 reps.
So now tell me…
Do you like the term “beast” for workouts?
How do you turn up the intensity?