Finally saw a UFC fight that was worth staying up late to watch.
(and trust me, this is an AMAZING feat of will power for me..)
Now, regardless of whether or not you approve of Mixed Martial Arts I can tell you that there is some valuable lessons to be learned from this sport.
After watching George St. Pierre continually improve as a fighter (he’s the guy who one the main fight) I realized some rather obvious things and some not-so-obvious things.
Firstly, the Obvious:
Progress needs Progression.
Next, the non-obvious:
You can’t FORCE progression.
These two rules go for building muscle or losing fat or getting better at an activity….really, they go for everything in life.
Everybody talk about progress, but nobody talks about the fact that progress doesn’t work when you force it.
In fact, the go-to health and fitness Bravado is FORCE IT, FORCE IT, FORCE IT!
The mantra of almost any get rich quick scheme is FORCE IT, FORCE IT, FORCE IT!
Yet, in my opinion the truth is:
You need to improve, BUT you need to get rid of the obstacles that are preventing you from improving.
You just can’t push your way through everything (Forcing it doesn’t always work).
Sometimes you need to be smart and remove your obstacles INSTEAD of going through them….
Banging your head against a brick wall so to speak.
When it comes to losing body fat, it’s all about eating less.
But ‘eating less’ is much easier to type, then it is to actually do.
Most of the time, it’s because, well…we really like to eat.
So an example of REMOVING The problem instead of FORCING your way thought it, would be not keeping foods in your house that you
‘love’ enough to pig out on (even though you know the consequences).
(And you know I’m a big fan of allowing people to enjoy their food.)
But there’s a BIG difference between allowing yourself the occasional piece of cake, or dessert at your favorite restaurant
and DESTROYING a box of Orea Cookies every week, just because they are there.
Remove the problem instead of trying your force yourself through it.
Don’t make every day of your life a constant WILL POWER BATTLE…
The easier solution is to simply avoid keeping the Oreos in your house.
When it comes to workouts, it’s all about lifting “more”.
Now ‘more’ may be volume, weight, intensity…however you personally want to improve, something has to increase.
In the case of working out, it’s typically things that you ignore or try to ‘push through’ that are preventing you from
From my experience this doesn’t work….EVER.
If you have a weak point it needs to be fixed…you can’t just ignore it and force your way though it.
(just like you can’t pretend the bag of Oreos isn’t there)
Getting back to George St. Pierre, this is how he became champion –
He consistently improved his weak spots…he didn’t ignore them.
For you, this means addressing injuries…
Especially those nagging injuries that you ignore thinking they will ‘go away’
It doesn’t work, and its preventing you from reaching your goals.
Get them fixed.
Don’t force your way through them, roll with them..rest if you need rest, get it fixed if it needs to be fixed.
Ignore exercises that aggravate and concentrate on the ones that seem to help.
I’m bench pressing again because I finally took the time to address my shoulders.
The result is bigger, stronger shoulders and a pain free bench press (and a stern lesson to treat this lift with a little more respect)
For many people, it’s the lower back.
If you have a bad lower back you can’t squat, or bench, or even curl without some form of pain.
If you are going to progress, look for things you are trying to ‘force’ …..then remove them (If you can).
As funny as it sounds, you can’t force progress, you allow progress to happen.
For fat loss, if food is your issue, instead of ‘dieting’ and fighting a hard battle, you could just use the Eat Stop Eat philosophy and simply remove the problem once or twice a week. (Basically ‘Allowing’ fat loss to happen, rather than trying to force it to happen).
Saves you lots of effort, lots of decisions..no more forcing it, you just remove it.
PS- Speaking of MMA and bad backs, Eric Wong is an MMA specialist who has a free report on exercises that help back pain.
Obviously, I’m not an expert in back pain by any means, but I know Eric had a really (really) messed up back, and now he’s pain free so it may be worth a look..you can check it out here: