That’s what I hear a lot, from people who have thrown in the towel and given up on their fitness routine. “I didn’t see any results. It’s just not worth it.”
Have you ever said this? Can we unpack this loaded statement for a moment?
Here are, in my experience, some of the most common reasons that people don’t “see results”
1) They’re focused on results.
Sorry to sound tongue-in-cheek, but frankly people, if you are into fitness just for the “results,” and by results I’m assuming you mean something related to a visibly changed body, increased muscle tone, weight loss, and the like, then I’m here to rain on your parade. It’s like when you shoot for a particular number on a scale, and keep telling yourself that once you hit “that number,” everything will be nice and peachy.
Focusing on results can be useful as a motivating tool, but it shouldn’t be the reason you’re investing your time and energy in a fitness regimen.
Fitness at its best is a lifestyle. That means that results will come, because you are going to be engaging in your fitness routine on a consistent and regular basis with forceful effort. Bringing me to:
2) They give up too soon.
Once again, fitness should be a lifestyle. Any lifestyle choice means it is a part of your daily/weekly routine, and doesn’t come and go with the seasons, weather, moods, etc. Just like eating or getting dressed, or going to work or making time for the things you enjoy doing, your fitness routine needs to be a regular and steady part of your life. That means you aren’t working out until you hit “X” size or “X” weight. Get those markers out of your head. You are working out because this is now part of what you do, every day or at least every other day or throughout the week.
3) They don’t modify their diet.
Let’s be honest here. You can lift weights and do burpees until the cows come home, but if you’re eating Krispy Kremes and drinking margaritas, your body won’t respond to your physical activity. Diet and exercise go hand in hand. You already know that. But it takes dedication to eating healthy in order to see consistent and visible results. When I started training I cut out all bread, pasta, non-water drinks, and sugar. For me personally, that strictness wasn’t sustainable long-term (for example I have re-incorporated bread in a limited amount and I do have more than one glass of wine a week), but for my own personal “results,” it took some major, life-altering sacrifices. So if you’re really hung up on results, you have to make drastic changes.
4) They don’t have a clue what they’re doing in the gym.
If you’re going to the gym, I commend you, as that’s more than a lot of people out there. However, what are you doing once you get there? Do you have a plan? Are you working towards specific goals? No? Then don’t complain about not getting results! You have no specific goals, so you wouldn’t even know results if they knocked you over the head, because you don’t know what results you want! Wait, you do? Ok, good. Start with that as a goal. What do you want to achieve? Then, like you would with any other goal in your life, start doing research about how to get there. Maybe you need to hire a personal trainer to get you going. Maybe you can read up and research on the Internet. Maybe a good book will give you the information and workout plans that you need (I really love this one, which I’ve probably mentioned before.) All that to say: don’t just go to the gym so you can catch up on reading a magazine while you mindlessly put one foot in front of the other on a zero-speed treadmill or bike. Going to the gym is work time. Focus, pay attention, concentrate, push yourself. If you aren’t nearly dying and soaking wet with sweat every time you finish your workout, then don’t you dare come to me complaining that you never see results.
5) No one is going to do it for you.
What is this? People often times don’t take responsibility for their lack of seeing results. Honestly. If you are saying “I didn’t see any results,” ask yourself why. Were you in the gym at least 3 times a week doing a structured training regimen with specific goals? Were you closely monitoring your diet to make sure that you were eating foods to support your fitness goals? Results won’t come to you. You have to work for them. That takes time, effort, and dedication.
No one is going to do this for you. You aren’t entitled to results. But if you work for them, you’ll get them, because at the same time, results aren’t only for “special” people. They are for anyone and for everyone — those who are willing to put in the effort, time, and dedication to making fitness their lifestyle and not just a passing fad.
What has been your biggest challenge regarding seeing results in your fitness regimen?