So now you are on cruise control. Killer workout plan. Realistic nutrition plan. You feel great, look great, and are soon to look even better. But keep in mind there are still a few pitfalls that can trip you up and derail your progress. Here is what you are sure to encounter and how to deal with it:
Pitfall #1 Peer pressure from unsupportive friends
Make no mistake about it, some people who you encounter that are impressed with your progress are also secretly envious and spiteful. Need proof? How many times have you heard something along the lines of “oh come on, you look incredible, one night off of your diet isn’t going to hurt anything”? While they may be somewhat correct, progress is directly tied to discipline and you must stay disciplined in the face of peer pressure. Their goals are not the same as your goals, so don’t fall into the trap of thinking what is good for them is acceptable for you. I always ask myself - ok, what is more enjoyable, the taste of this pizza, or the feeling of having shredded abs? That always puts it in perspective. Nothing tastes better than having abs.
Pitfall #2: Special Events
Holidays. The game. Your anniversary. Your friends going away party. Dollar beer night at the local spot. Trust me, there will always be a “legitimate” reason to stray from your plan. This is when you really need to be strong and stay focused on the big picture. However sometimes there is an obstacle that you cannot overcome. Maybe it’s christmas dinner at Grandma Jane’s or its ice cream with your daughter on her birthday, but some things are unavoidable. This is the crucial time to employ the strategy of “minimal damage”. You know a pitfall is coming so you:
1. Workout early that day.
2. Eat perfect leading up to the event. Don’t let an evening party be an excuse to stray all day.
3. Immediately return to your plan the following morning.
4. Do a 2-a-day in the gym the following day, with one of the sessions being a long steady state cardio session to sweat it out.
Follow those steps and minimize the damage as you get back on track. A bump in the road can be a minor nuisance that is soon in your rear view mirror, or it can give you a flat tire. You decide.
Pitfall #3: Thinking you are already there
So you’ve made some progress, the scale is dropping, and your cuts are popping. You can afford to be a little lax, right? Slow down son. Remember how you got to your present state and keep that momentum going. It’s easier to keep momentum going than to try to restart after veering off course. Don’t be satisfied until you have reached your goal.