It’s Not All Been Doom And Gloom
There have been some silver linings in 2020, and I’m not simply looking to buck the trend.
It’s been a year that’s thrown everyone’s resolutions into complete disarray, whisking away the things we took for granted. And by that, I’m really just talking about the business of lifting iron. The lockdown stuck, then it struck back, and then once more for good measure. This puts a giant spanner in the cogs of a fitness transformation. But rather than playing up the victim mindset, there was a chance to relish the upside.
There’s nothing wrong in being tested, even when the odds are stacked against you. More than that, it’s a pivotal part of the process. This is about becoming anti-fragile, building an immunity to stress. In order to achieve that, you need to face down a few demons.
The truth is that we’re sitting in the midst of the easiest timeline to date. In the case of most of us, there are no wars to be fought, no famines to ride out, and no fatal diseases to run from. But 2020 has made a persistent effort to change that, and it’s a good thing. Humans thrive under tension, when put into conflict. Sometimes it’s worth dreaming up a few enemies even when you have none. In everyone, there’s a warrior spirit biding its time, to be unleashed.
An environment of stress is the breeding ground for strength. For some, stress management is an ongoing policy of strict avoidance. If you see an ex storming your way, you pretend not to notice and cross to the other side of the street. When you’re lifting, and it hurts, you stop. If the gyms are shut, you throw up your arms and settle for waiting it out. Not only does the passive approach hurt progress, but the complacency it brings to the table can be downright dangerous.
But what if you were to do the opposite, and lean in to stress? This isn’t about fostering suicidal tendencies. In any event, you could just ask yourself these questions before taking the plunge on whether an obstacle needs to be tackled or circumvented.
Will this put me on a hospital bed, or behind bars? If neither seems likely, then you’re clear to tackle that foe head-on.
Keeping The Fitness Spark Alive
So 2020 certainly made it harder to train, especially if all you had was a bit of floor-space in a small flat and a few random bands you found trapped at the bottom of a dusty box. The diet also would have been its own challenge, because there’d be fewer ways to distract yourself from caving into the fifth snack of the morning. The whole healthy lifestyle business would have been hamstrung by a constant struggle to spark some motivation.
None of this makes a fitness transformation impossible, it just means the difficulty level has been given a few tweaks. You’re not cruising along on amateur anymore. It may be that you’ll be unable to get any stronger on your bench press, but you certainly have a chance at avoiding losing hard-earned gains.
The kitchen game may turn out to be a rollercoaster of good days and all-day binges, but there’ll be an opportunity to test out new foods and learn from mistakes. By simply committing to a fresh routine, regardless of how successful your efforts are, each day means progress.
And if you’re a practiced insomniac, 2020 presented the perfect opportunity to tackle the issue. Even if it took longer to cover up the ground, owing to a gross lack of nearby dumbbells and summer milestones, you’d still emerge stronger. Tough times build resilient people with the ability to thrive in any environment.
The fact that we’re in yet another lockdown that’s set to continue on for weeks, means resilience-building is still the dominant theme running forward. Waiting it out has never been on the cards.
The Carnivore Cult
So with resilience being the frontline agenda, I’m delighted with these guys for pushing on in spite of 2020, and keeping the spark throughout. When things finally settle down, it’ll just be a matter of building on the progress they’ve already made. And if you can stay disciplined during adversity, then fair weather becomes the cakewalk it should be.
The Cliffnotes Of A Carnivore Transformation
My diet advice to clients is nothing if not consistent, as you’d imagine when taking a quick scan at the titles of my blog posts. So I naturally made it my mission to encourage these guys to do the following.
- Ditch the carbs
- Eliminate vegetable oils
- Bring back the superfoods
Read The Guide – The 14 Day Apex Reset
To aid them, I used a mix of meal plans, food diary tracking, and general guidelines. The real trick was just getting into play. With the three strategies up and running, the results would be felt instantly by the drop in inflammation, and the subsequent upgrades in sleep and energy. At this point my carnivore cultists would be more than happy to carry on with the nutritional intervention. Nothing hooks quite like instantaneous results.
As for training, we made use of the weights when the gyms were available, but otherwise threw together what we could. This is where focusing on technique made a monumental difference. When you can’t lift as heavy, because your home dumbbell rack doesn’t go up past 5kg, then your only hope for strength gains is in manipulating tension.
Settle for training smart before training hard. With better technique, the ability to feel the muscle move through peak contraction and extension, the tension is magnified. Throwing down an extra scoop of preworkout is no substitute for that.
Finally, for the lifestyle angle, I made use of my habit tracker, but mainly settled for preaching from the soapbox and practising those habits myself. By lifestyle, I threw in all the extra parts that tackled stress-management and recovery. With an emphasis on sleep and mindfulness, all the bases of a fitness transformation were covered.
The route of a fitness transformation is almost always within control, despite the outside forces that may be assailing you from all sides. As long as your limbs haven’t deserted you, it’s a fair fight. 2020 has been no different.
If you’re curious to try it out for yourself, you’re in luck. The Fit Awakening Online Membership takes you through the complete coaching experience, with customised plans across training, nutrition, and lifestyle. Even better, it starts with a free 7-day trial.