Men’s Fitness
by Scott Henry
Personal Trainer
Lifestyle Fitness Erskineville

Who has been training hard for that perfect body but is losing a little motivation? Only weeks out for what most of us have been training for — Mardi Gras, where we can get our shirts off and show that body off and dance, dance, dance!

Have you lost motivation because you’re too busy with work? You’re bored with your program? You feel as though you’re not going to reach your goal? Or you’re not seeing the results?

First, I would like to make special mention of my client Blake who has smashed his short-term goal of losing 10.2kg in six weeks. Blake has been training hard. He has been having two personal training sessions as well as doing 30-45 minutes cardio four to five times a week around a busy work schedule.

Blake is thinking about his next short-term goal. Keep up the hard work!

Here are some ways to stay focused and get the most out of your training.

Why are you exercising?
Everyone should ask themselves why they are exercising. Is it because you want to get into shape for an up coming event? Do you want to lose weight, tone, have more energy, sleep better, gain strength, and gain muscle mass or is it just for general health and wellbeing?

If you’re exercising for someone else (e.g a boyfriend has said you need to lose weight) you need a new reason and possibly a new boyfriend.

Have you set your goals?
You should set both short-term and long-term goals, with short term goals being achieved in three – six weeks and long term goals achieved in six – 12 months.

It is important to make sure your goals are realistic and achievable so they doesn’t become discouraging for you, but are high enough so you have an incentive and something to work hard for.

Be realistic. Make sure your goals are related to your main reason for exercising. Goals set do not have to be weight loss or weight gain. It could be running the City to Surf the whole way.

If your goal is for a healthier lifestyle, it could be to reduce your resting heart rate or blood pressure.

Are you keeping track of your progress?
Take photos every month to keep visual track of your achievements. Keep a log (diary) of your measurements (weight, etc), the exercise you do, and how you feel such as your energy levels or if you’ve lift your heaviest weight so far.

How do I stay on track?
If you enjoy working out with someone, call a friend and organise to meet daily. This helps hold you accountable for the workouts.

If you prefer to work out alone, give yourself something fun to do while you exercise. Find some good hardcore pumping music or whatever you enjoy to listen to during your workouts.

Identify the excuses you like to use and have a readymade response. If time is an issue, pencil workout time in your diary and make sure your workout clothes are ready to go. It’s called being organised.

Change your routine as you reach new goals. Add zest to your workout and avoid the exercise plateau by increasing the intensity or the duration of your workout, or by trying a new workout or sport. Keep it interesting and fun to stay motivated and focused.

Hiring a trainer can be a great way. If you are in an exercise rut, consider consulting with a personal trainer for a session or two. You will learn new techniques and find fresh motivation.

Try to avoid taking more than one day off. I have found this important to avoid losing momentum. I’ve noticed if people take two days off, it can become easy to take another day off. If your workout is only part of your weekday routine, introduce it into your weekend routine. If you miss a few workout sessions due to things you have no control over or eating poorly, get straight back into it or straight back to healthy eating.

Give yourself simple rewards, whether it be a food snack such as chocolate or something else naughty, a new outfit for the new body, a magazine, a weekend away or even just new gym gear.

See exercise as something you do for yourself — a gift you give yourself, a way to stay balanced and focused, and time when you can be alone with your thoughts.

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