To help you get on the right track from the start of your fitness journey, here are the 10 Miyagi tips that we know will prove useful to achieving your longterm goals and to achieving your much wanted results!
Tip 1 – Maybe you don’t know?
One of the biggest pitfalls people falter over when they’re starting a new training and nutrition system is what we call the “I know” syndrome. The best way to describe it is with examples .
Let’s take a skinny guy who’s complaining about being skinny. You tell him he’s got to increase his energy intake and lift relatively heavy weights to put on muscle, and he says “I know, I know!”
Take an obese woman who needs to lose weight to get her health back in check. Her doctor tells her that she needs a major lifestyle change including a calorie controlled meal plan and a structure daily exercise routine, and she says “I know, I know!”
We’ve all used the “I know, I know” shut down before. But when we really think about it, even though these people think they may know what they need to do, maybe the reality is that they don’t know how they need to do it.
See you don’t really know how to do something until you have successfully done something yourself and are able to repeat it.
“I know, I know” is just a mental shut down that enables us to end the conversation and prevent any action from taking place. So keep this in mind as you’re moving forward with your training and nutrition process. Be teachable.
Just think, if you have room for improvement in any area, maybe you don’t know, or how to do it. If you really knew, you would have already done it. Get expert help, it will make all the difference.
Tip 2 – Match your behaviours with your goals
Another pitfall we encourage you to avoid at all cost is the problem of not matching your goals with your daily behaviours.
People fall short in this area all the time. Let’s say a guy that is 120kg and obviously greatly overweight joins the gym with the goal to lose 40kg of body fat and he only exercises 2 times per week. He continues to eat unrestricted and sensible advice of moving more. His goals are massive and require major effort, his behaviours are small and inconsequential lifestyle changes.
In life we can all set large and lofty goals, to earn a million dollars you have to have a million dollar work ethic. Things in life aren’t going to come to us easily just because we want them, we have to earn them. The level of our desire is often reflected in our behaviours.
For best results, get a coach to help you achieve your goals. Their recommendations are based on what you want to achieve and how fast you want to achieve them. If you’re skipping meals, not following a nutrition plan, only doing 3 out of 6 training sessions a week, you need to be honest with yourself and ask yourself if your behaviours are matching your goals.
Tip 3 – Understand that you’ll see peaks and valleys
You may be surprised to hear this, but we encourage you to relax your goals and behaviours from time to time. It’s necessary and health to do so.
To start with, not everyone has big goals that would require 90% compliance all year round. Ultimately it’s your decision and responsibility to pick your own level of commitment and we encourage you to take all steps that will improve on where you’re at today. But once you set your goal, it’s also your responsibility to match your level of commitment to your goals.
To help keep you on track and to achieve sustainable results, just as you should periodise your training, you can also periodise your level of commitment so that you don’t burn out.
Example of this periodisation would be, instead of tackling 52 weeks in your head as the goal, target a 12 week phase committing to getting your body in balance and creating new habits, the next 12 weeks phase may be focused on shedding some body fat, the next 12 weeks may be focus on increasing some quality lean muscle and so on…
This is a much better approach, this is training versus just exercising without any real purpose or method to the madness.
You can also plan your training around major life events like holidays, example lets say that you’re travelling in June, why not then ramp up your training and commitment in May leaving into your break as you will inevitably have a less focused and stringent month in June whilst on holidays.
Tip 4 – Start small and slow if necessary
Sometimes we want to go from 0 to 100 in the blink of an eye. Often this approach leads to information overload and creates too much pressure and stress in our already over complicated lives.
The best approach for longterm and sustainable behaviour and results is to be honest with yourself and look objectively at your plan to agree on what the appropriate steps will be to start creating change at your pace.
Ultimately you’re driving the bus, the role of a coach would be just to act as the co-pilot directing you along the journey. They should tell you though what you need to hear, not just what you want to hear.
Tip 5 – Start basic, then individualise
Miyagi Fitness is known for individualising training and nutrition plans towards the clients goals and desired outcomes.
The fist few steps in getting started with with a training an d nutrient plan should be simple and basic, habit focused. Once you have been able to stick to your basic habits for a few weeks successfully and consistently, then you can take things to the next level and really individualise your plan to suit.
A monthly check in and accountability system with a coach will increase your chances of success, you will be able to determine whether your plan is working, whether your commitment level to your habits and training actually matches up to your goals.
There is no “one size fits all” approach. Each and every person is different and will therefore require at some point to have their plan further individualised and tailored towards them.
Tip 6 – If you have specific goals, measure them
Creating change with our bodies is not easy, it requires knowing what you want, how you will go about to achieving it, then committing to it and then most importantly, tracking it!
Measuring progress is one of the most important aspects of this journey, most people are results driven. The more results they see the more they commit, it’s self perpetuating.
If we fail to track our progress, we’re likely to be unsure about what we have actually been able to achieve thus far and therefore become disillusioned and or second guess ourselves and lose trust in the process.
In the Miyagi habit tracker, we have included many tools to keep our clients focused and to give them the ability to measure many different things from:
- Body composition (body weight, body fat percentage, lean body mass) via DEXA and skin folds
- Body part girths (waist, hips, thighs, arms)
- Athletic performance measures (strength, cardiovascular etc)
- Happiness tracker, mood, appetite, sleep etc
We encourage you to track as much as you can as often as you can, this will be the difference from achieving and not achieving what you came to us for.
Tip 7 – Measurement and expectations
For anyone with a specific composition related goal, you must measure and track your progress! Why? Because without tracking these things, there would be no way to determine whether or not your training and nutrition plan has worked.
The human body never works in a completely linear fashion, there will be phases that results seem to come easy and others that feel like they require blood or human sacrifice! So results can come in bursts and other times stagnate.
Consider, for this example the fertile chicken egg. The fertile chicken egg if you watch it for some time look like nothing is happening, no change, nothing. Then one day, seemingly completely out of the blue, out pops a chick. While the egg sat idle, seemingly motionless, it was all happening on the inside.
Start to look at various different variables to measure your health and performance improvements to make sure you’re not missing important changes.
We all spend so much time looking at the outside of our bodies, when we should all stop and consider what is happening on the inside of our bodies when we start a training and nutrition plan. We can all get frustrated with a lack of progress from time to time, but, often things are changing, just on the inside.
So if you’re being truely honest with yourself and following a program to the BEST of your ability, and nothing is changing on the outside just remember that there are changes going on on the inside of you and sooner or later those changes will create change on the outside if you keep pushing.
Tip 8 – The numbers paradox
Although we stress over and over that keep track of the numbers is vital on this journey, here’s the paradox: Numbers aren’t everything. Don’t let the numbers be the thing that destroys the enjoyment of the journey for you.
We’ve seen it time and time again, people that get so caught up with the numbers that they forget to breathe and enjoy the journey that they have started towards them becoming the best version of themselves. And that’s a mistake.
Your happiness should not be linked to your numbers. Remember that this isn’t a numbers game, this is life. The main reason you are involved in a program is to be a better version of yourself so that you can live a much more fulfilling life with increased energy and vitality.
We want to encourage you to embrace the journey, to learn to love it and to trust the process. Most importantly we encourage you to smile and laugh your way through it, go through the process happy. If you’re happy, the chances of you achieving the results you want increase dramatically.
Tip 9 – Reasonable progress
So often we see people to come to us disillusioned about having lost 3% body fat in three months or 3 kgs of fat mass in 6 weeks complaining about the progress being slow. This blows us away as these are VERY good results that are going in the right direction.
If you’re a female at 30% body fat and you have lost on average 1% of body fat a month on for the first 3 months of your training with us and then continue to lose 1% body fat every month for the next 12 months, at the end of the year you will be at the low range of body fat percentages of females and would now be considered “athletic”! That’s amazing!
If you’re a male and you gain 500g of lean muscle a month every month for the first year of training with us, at the end of the year thats a whopping 6kg of lean muscle mass that you have added to your physique! That will add some decent size to your frame.
Understanding what’s reasonable and not is very important for your longterm success so that you stay on the path and don’t get discouraged. With consistency and persistent effort, you will get there.
One way to stay true and on the path is to acknowledge the “wins”. Weekly, review your wins in the gym and out of the gym. Celebrate these. It’s important.
Tip 10 – Maintain your rate of progress
What about for those that have had major success? Ah yes, we are all subject to the law of diminishing returns, eventually even for a client that has had major progress, sooner or later things will slow down as they can’t continue at that rate. At the point you need to refocus your attention to maintaining your great results.
Example, if you start off at 25% body fat and begin the program by losing 3% body fat in the first 6 weeks, if you continue at that rate in a few months you’d be dead! No one can survive at -10% body fat. The body will adapt and you will have to get smarter and or change / update your goals and adjust your training and nutrition accordingly.
Final words of wisdom
As you go forward on your journey, keep these 10 tips at the forefront of your thinking and available to revise regularly. If you want to succeed on a path that so many people fail on every day, you need to adopt a winning and relentless mentality that we will teach you. If you ever get discouraged and feel like you’re wavering, get a coach, contact us at email@example.com and find out how we can help you change your life!