Over the course of time that I have owned personal training gyms, I have heard every possible excuse as to why clients cannot commit to a rigorous exercise schedule or why they have not seen the results they had hoped for. Work and home stress, kids, school all play a major role in distracting one from reaching their health and fitness goals. No matter what one’s environmental circumstances are, though, getting in the best shape of your life is always possible.
Recently, a staff member in one of my gyms decided to do his first bodybuilding competition. For those that are unaware; a bodybuilding competition requires one to diet down to near death levels of body-fat while maintaining as much muscle as possible. Essentially, it is taking the concept “getting in the best shape of your life” to a true extreme.
When Andrea told me that he wanted to do his first competition I was excited for him but also concerned, as I knew that not only did he work full-time in my Coconut Grove gym but he was also a full time pre-med undergraduate student with a young child. Familiar with the many reasons that I had heard over and over as to why clients had struggled to reach their goals, I was admittedly worried that Andrea might be taking on more than he could handle.
Over the next four months, I watched in amazement as Andrea ate spartan pre-prepared and tupperware-packaged meals of meticulously measured chicken breast and green vegetables five times per day, while training clients from 6 am onward and studying for his classes in between breaks. Off and on he would tell me about his new son, to whom he was a great father, and always was able to come home with excitement and enthusiasm despite a long work day, minimal sleep — and no carbohydrates.
Eventually the time passed and Andrea went to his competition, supported by the staff in both my South Miami and Coconut Grove gyms. By this point, we had all been so amazed by his fortitude, that they now followed him as his own cheering section. The day before Andrea’s competition, he had work and an exam. He ended up placing second in the most competitive bodybuilding competition in Florida — and one of the most competitive amateur competitions in the country.
While I understand that the average person starting an exercise program has no interest in becoming a bodybuilder, my point is to illustrate that there are truly no excuses when it comes to your fitness. It is certainly not easy, but the rewards are worth it — whether you are standing on a bodybuilding stage, proud of your body at the beach with your kids or just having an easier time carrying your groceries to the front door. No excuses.