The mind is everything when it comes to bodybuilding.
The mind is what makes the choices of what and when to eat, when to lift weights, and often when to stop.
Pain is a good teacher. Sometimes we can let our minds convince us we are finished when we are not. You just have to go through the pain and get used to it.
It gets easier the more consistently you do it, you train your mind to say “FUCK THE PAIN, KEEP GOING!”
A NEW LEVEL OF PAIN THRESHOLD BEGINS TO DEVELOP!
Our minds are so interesting and powerful that I've found “mental tricks” to make myself stronger.
That's right, whenever I fail there are usually always a few more reps I could have belted out if I had used these mental tricks on myself.
MENTAL TRICK #1 – COUNT REPS BACKWARDS
Yep, instead of counting to a set of 10 or 20 reps rep by rep upwards, start counting downwards in your mind.
It's easier to see progression when you think of a set as “20,19,18,17…” rather than “1… 2… 3… 4.
This is usually easier with higher rep stuff, but hey, try it with whatever you're doing and see if it works for you.
MENTAL TRICK #2 – THINK OF YOUR PUSHING AND PULLING MUSCLES AS HYDRAULIC MACHINES
How would a machine operate? It would be smooth, powerful, and consistent right?
You need to think of your reps as smooth, powerful, and consistent then!
The way you do this is you ACTUALLY VISUALIZE YOUR MUSCLES AND LIMBS AS MACHINES!
I know, I sound like I belong in the nuthouse right? But I have found this to actually work well for me.
When I visualize the fluidity of the movement and then just put the muscle output into the mental picture, I become instantly stronger. TRY IT!
MENTAL TRICK #3 – THINK POSITIVE AND THINK OF WHAT YOU WANT OUT OF LIFE, LOSE YOURSELF
Before your set, and during your sets, think of goals, positivity, and things in life that make you truly happy.
I used to visualize myself out on the lake or ocean on a boat, fishing with my son.
I would lose myself in this thought as I banged out rep after rep, the more immersed I became in these sort of thoughts, the more muscle output I produced and the more reps I would get!
Think of what you want out of life. Let yourself use whatever exercise you're doing as a positive foundation for chasing these thoughts!
Sometimes, what we want out of life stems from a chain reaction of our thoughts and processes.
How do you know that one day your reality of being on that water and actually getting it didn't begin with that set in the gym?
See, you all think it began with the purchase of a boat, but for me it doesn't work this way.
That boat began with that set of weights, because my foundation in my life is busting my ass in the gym!
Everything else in my life is a byproduct of extreme physical training and challenging myself!
THE THOUGHT PROCESSES TAKE AWAY THE DISTRACTIONS
When you get deeper into your mind, it's easier to get TOTALLY AWAY from any negativity or distractions.
Sometimes, just distractions become processed as negativity in our brains, because these distractions derail our thoughts.
Instead of thinking about my muscles and my set, a distracting thought could be interpreted as ,”DAMN, WHY WON'T THAT GUY TAKE A STEP BACK FROM THE DUMBBELL RACK SO OTHERS COULD GET TO THE WEIGHTS?”
Or another one would be to see someone's cell phone on the floor and automatically think of the financial loss of stepping on it.
It's not necessarily negativity, but examples like this BECOME NEGATIVITY when they disrupt your thoughts and get in the way of your vision.
So try these 3 mental tricks for becoming instantly stronger!