8/19/2003 - From time to time it is of infinite importance to re-evaluate where you stand in relation to the goals you set for yourself. These evaluations can help determine your performance or training fate.
The dog days of summer are upon us and that could only mean one thing, it's darn hot! Well, that and the fact that you're running out of time to hit your summertime goals.
If you're like me, the seasons represent a great time to refocus, regroup, and revive the spirit of self-improvement. As summer wears on, it's time to think back to the goals that you set for yourself back in mid-May, and consider if you're doing what it takes to reach those goals.
If you're a football player, you likely sought out to gain strength, size and speed to maximize the explosiveness needed to become a better player. If you're a basketball player, you are probably working on your finer skills, such as shooting, dribbling and defense. If you're a non-competitive athlete who's just looking to get into better shape, you may have set your sites on a leaner, stronger body.
Regardless of your goal, now is the time to determine which of the following groups you fall into, and then evaluate what you need to do from there:
What Group Are You In?
Group One: You have been following each painful, yet rewarding step of your specific
training program with maximum effort, and you completely expect to reach your goals.
Group Two: You have been training, but not to the degree that you originally set out to. However, you understand that you need to pick up your training RIGHT NOW in order to reach your goals.
Group Three: You have been slacking off, and you have determined that you cannot reach your goals.
Group Four: You have been slacking off, but you still think that you are doing what is necessary for you to reach your goals and be successful.
Group One Evaluation:
For those of you in group one, congratulations, you should be proud of yourself because you are in the smallest and most prestigious group. The most important thing for you now is to keep re-evaluating your existing goals and begin to set newer and loftier goals for yourself.
Next, continue doing everything in your power to realize each new goal. We're proud of you, and we'll do everything we can to help you here at Bodybuilding.com. Be sure to check out the huge article database!
Group Two Evaluation:
If you're in group two, we're proud of you as well. We understand that sometimes things just don't go the way we plan them to, but more importantly, you've taken the most important step by realizing that you're not training as hard as you need to.
Now, take a step back and take a good look at what you need to do differently to achieve those goals. Your changes could range from altering your diet to overhauling your training program. The most important thing is that you understand that some changes need to be made, and that you can still be successful with a little more effort or expert tutelage.
Again, we have the top strength and conditioning coach's expertise to help you fix the problem, so use us. If you determine what the problem is, we'll do whatever we can to help you fix it and achieve your goals.
Group Three Evaluation:
Members of group three take heart, as we encourage you that it's not too late. It's common for individuals to set non-realistic goals for themselves, but that's not a reason to give up. It's just not realistic to go from 150 pounds and 15% body fat to 200 pounds and 5% body fat in two months, or lower your 40 time from 5.0 seconds to 4.5 seconds doing sprints twice a week. All this calls for is a little re-evaluation of what you would like to achieve and what you think it will take to get you there.
I reiterate that this is very common. Chances are, it's not that you won't be capable of success in your training endeavor, it's just that you need to focus a little more on your personal reality. Some individuals achieve lofty athletic status in spite of their non-constructive efforts, but rest assured that these individuals are the exception and not the rule.
You can do it. Re-set your goals by giving a realistic evaluation of what you would like to achieve, coupled with the amount of time and effort it will take on your behalf to realize your personal success. All these parts must be in place for you to achieve your goals, this total effort will be vital to your success.
Group Four Evaluation:
Let me start by admitting that I've been in this group before. In fact, this is actually a highly-populated group. I, like many others, have set goals and gone out and followed my program half-assed thinking all along that I was giving my all.
With that being said - there's no excuse to be in this group. All that I can tell you is that denial is not an achievement. In fact, denial is a serious deterrent. That's right, as long as you fool yourself into thinking that you're doing what is necessary to achieve your goals, you'll never achieve anything except a sense of resentment from those who really are giving it their all, regardless of their goals or results. Without effort, everything else is worthless.
You need to understand that what you actually do determines your fate, not what you think you can do or what you tell people you can do. You may be able to fool yourself, but you can't fool everybody. At some point it will catch back up to you, and when it does, you'll have to fight like hell to regain the respect you've lost from your contemporaries, peers, teammates or coaches.
On the upside, you must be doing something right, otherwise you wouldn't think that you were doing everything to reach your goals. You see, this is a concept of perception. Some people perceive that they are doing their best, and therefore, their perception is their reality, though not necessarily a reality to those around them.
Now that you've evaluated your goals and the effort you have put forth to achieve them, let me share with you a little secret. Because everybody in group four thinks that they are in group one, the only way to ensure that nobody else (including your teammates or coach) believes that you are in group four is to train even harder and more diligently.
That's right. No matter whether you feel you're doing your best or not, you can always do a little more. I guarantee that if you dig deep enough, every single one of us can find something that we can do better. Whether you believe or not, the best way to ensure that you are someone in group four is to perceive that you don't have anything to improve upon.
If you think that you do everything perfect, all I can say is, "Good luck, you'll need it." For the rest of us, let's rededicate ourselves to being our best. We start reaching our goals right now!