Week 5: Mental Muscle—3 Tips For Better Training

Many people think about only exercise and food when making major changes to their body and health.  But that’s not enough. Overhauling your physique and lifestyle requires a shift in your mindset—along with a ton of focus. If your mind’s not right, your body will never follow.

Yeah, you work your quads, hamstrings, glutes, and calves on leg day. But you’ve got to work your mental muscle every single day. To be successful in this Bulk Up program (and beyond), here are my three biggest pieces of advice for getting your head in the game:

Tip #1: Fail Fast and Fail Forward

As much as we love the idea of going hard all the time and doing everything 100 percent (this program, included), the fact is, failure happens. This challenge is a journey, and failures happen on the road to reaching any major goal or success. You’re going to blow a workout or go a little too hard on a greasy meal at some point. My advice: Fail fast and fail forward. Accept your failures and learn from them.

A bump in the road doesn’t have to derail your entire game plan. One bad meal doesn’t have to turn into an entire week of eating like garbage. One lame workout doesn’t mean the next one can’t be awesome. Remind yourself of this and you’ll develop the mental strength to forgive yourself for any failures and get right back in the game. Take the hit and keep pushing through.

Tip #2: Surround Yourself With Positive, Like-Minded People

One of my favorite quotes is by entrepreneur and speaker Jim Rohn: “We are the average of the five people we associate with the most.” I find that to be especially true when it comes to living a healthy and active lifestyle. If you’re trying to make a big change in your life and body, you’d probably rather have other motivated, fitness-focused people around you, right? Having people in your life who don’t support your goals or the fit life can drag you down, delay your progress, and just make you feel really crummy.

Having a solid support system and a sense of accountability to someone else can really give you the mental edge you need to make it through when the grind gets tough. Embrace people who encourage you to work toward your goals and who will pick you up when you fall. If your crew just isn’t doing it for you, strike up a conversation with your fellow gym regulars or take to social media. Any way you can connect with other people who share your interests will help!

Tip 3#: Keep Your Goals—And Game Plan—In Focus

If you don’t have a clear goal, how can you ever really achieve it? We all want to be healthy and fit—but the more specific the goal, the easier it is to figure out what you need to do to make it happen. You’re chugging through this program with me because you want to build a strong physique and pack on the muscle. Now, break that down into specific goals that will help you achieve your overall dream. To be able to squat twice your body weight—that’s a solid goal. To gain 10 pounds of lean mass—that’s a solid goal.

Then, you need to know how to get there. (Lucky for you, I’ve basically given you a road-map.) But in general, think about what the logistics of achieving your goal will look like. How much time would it take to pack on those ten pounds of muscle? Do you need a coach or someone to make sure you’re on track? (Again, luckily, you have me!)

A few best practices for setting your goals and mapping your journey toward them: Write down your overall and specific goals, take ‘before’ and ‘progress’ photos, write down initial measurements and track them over time, and set a date by which you want to achieve your goals. All of these practices will help you stay focused on progress and be as successful as possible.

All great successes and accomplishments were first imagined in someone’s mind before they ever came to fruition in real life. Visualize yourself reaching your goals, stay positive, and flex that mental muscle—along with all the others.

If you really need that extra push or someone to hold you accountable, please feel free to message me on Instagram (@jeremyscottfitness). I’m here to help you guys get stronger both physically and mentally.