Thoughts

Analyzing Your Workout for Self-Improvement

So there was a recent incident at my gym that involved a membership being revoked for “excessive nudity” and signs posted at the entrances and all around that members had been complaining of “excessive posing, nudity and photography.”

“Finally!” I thought. Here is a perfect example of negative gym culture being taken down a peg. Besides being obnoxious, and wasting your time as well as everyone else’s…well I guess there’s not much more to it then that.

But the incident got me thinking.

How focused am I on my training, rather than the appearance of my training?

My Patented Ugly Sweater Workout routine certainly helps keep my focused, but is it enough? How much time do I spend looking in the mirror, trying to see my own muscles bulge, or catch the cute girl looking my way? We all do it, I know. But here’s where I had a brainstorm.

My new rule of thumb for a workout analysis goes something like this:

Were you training like Rocky Balboa at the beginning of Rocky 3? Or were you training like Rocky Balboa at the end of Rocky 3?

I know, I know. It’s not the strongest film in the franchise, but I challenge you to find anyone who doesn’t understand the concept of a Rocky-style training montage. But I digress.

At the beginning of Rocky 3, when he is first challenged by Clubber Lang, Rocky has gone soft, fighting easy opponents, and doesn’t take his training too seriously. The press is in there with him, bombarding him with questions. He takes breaks to pose for photos, and smooch pretty ladies. There’s no fire, no urgency, no intent. It’s all a show.

Compare that to after his defeat, when Apollo begins training him. There’s intensity, desire, and will behind every action. There’s no fancy equipment or press box.Training is just training.

Now say what you will about the Rocky movies (except don’t actually, BECAUSE THEY’RE AMAZING) but at the end of the day, I think this lengthy metaphor holds true.

Are you in the gym to train? Or are you there to look good training?

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