Mindset, Nutrition & Training Expectations
The 3 pillars of success; mindset, nutrition, and training, are essential to achieve your fitness goals. If you can master your mindset, nutrition and training, then you are well on your way to achieving your goals. All 3 pillars are separate, as well as interconnected, and each pillar needs to be worked on separately. However, the order is what most people get wrong!
Your mind and body go hand in hand and both need to be in harmony. Mindset refers to everything that is going on in your head. This is what I consider the first pillar, and it’s where most people fail. The mind is stronger than any muscle in your body and if you can conquer your mindset then you have already won half the battle. Mindset includes attributes such as discipline, determination, motivation as well as negativity, unworthiness and laziness. Mindset is your foundation, and without a solid foundation you can’t build a house.
Next comes Nutrition – Nutrition is what we choose to eat. Nutrition is always based on education. If you can educate yourself on what to eat, and what not to eat, then you can conquer your diet. There is so much misinformation out there about food that confuses people, so once you understand this you can start making informed choices about your health and diet. However, there is one more factor which is understanding your body – there is no one size fits all diet, so you need to find what works for you.
The final pillar is Training; Training is all about exercise and moving your body. There are different types of training for different types of goals. Training is specific to your goal, so if you want to compete in bodybuilding then you must weight train, but if you want to compete in marathon running then you must run.
Why are the pillars in this order?
Let’s work from the final pillar back to the start, and begin with training. No matter how hard you train, you can’t out train a bad diet! Even the best workout might burn 600 calories, but if you go and get takeout straight after your workout and have some chocolate and ice cream as well, your workout is basically for nothing. Now this isn’t talking about your perfectly planned cheat meal, this is talking about the whole “I trained today so I’ve earned that cheesecake”.
Next let’s look at Nutrition – while nutrition is a crucial part of your plan, and goes hand in hand with your training plan, if you don’t have the right mindset you are going to struggle to achieve your goals. You could have the best nutrition plan in the world, but if you are too lazy to cook your own food, or get emotional and constantly overeat, you won’t achieve your goals. Fix the mindset, then get the perfect nutrition plan, then train hard and follow your workouts – that’s the key to success.
So now you might ask yourself, how can I master all three of these aspects? As you would train in the gym, you also need to train your mindset and your nutrition knowledge.
1) Mindset Training
Success happens in the mind. We set goals, we plan and we execute, all in our minds first. So just like you train your body, you also need to train your mind. There are a few simple strategies that you can work on to help you conquer your mindset, and get in the right frame of mind.
Work on your work ethic. Everybody has a work ethic and some are stronger than others. Those with a strong work ethic are the ones who usually succeed. Those with a strong work ethic don’t need to be told what to do, they don’t slack off and they don’t need monitoring. To improve your work ethic train yourself to finish tasks, be rational rather than emotional, put work first, don’t dwell on the negatives, be productive, get up early, and lastly, create a regimented routine and see it through to the end. Failure is not a failure if you learn from it and push forwards!
2) Nutrition Training
You will never achieve your fitness goals without a solid diet. Nutrition is about education. You can either learn from a dietician, personal trainer or from your own research. There is a lot to know but the most important is how your body reacts to certain foods. Everybody is different and some bodies do not respond well to ingredients like glucose, gluten, lactose or corn. So if you have stomach aches often, then make sure you get an allergy test and monitor what you’re eating.
The next thing you need to do is educate yourself on the numbers. You should be able to pick up any food and read the nutrition label. That is the fats, carbs, protein and calorie content and then you should be able to make a decision if you should eat it or not. Learn which foods are high in protein, fiber, carbs, and good fats. Learn which foods are nutrient dense and packed with vitamins and minerals, as well as which foods are packed with sugar and are high GI. A simple rule of thumb here is that if it has more than 5 ingredients, put it back and take something else.
3) Exercise Training
So what do you want to train for? What are your goals? Your goals will determine what kind of training you should do. Types of training include weight training, bodyweight training, running, swimming, cycling, plyometric training, Olympic lifting, etc. Once you have decided on a type of training you will need a progressive program that will lead you to your goals. If it’s not progressive, you won’t progress – it’s as simple as that! The next step is for you to learn the correct exercise technique for each movement. This is important as it will reduce your chances of injury, and allow you to continue on your training plan without any stops.
Mindset, nutrition and training are your three pillars of success. Train each of these pillars and master them. If you are able to do this then you will achieve your fitness goals.