If you’re in the gym what’s your goal?
It’s that simple.
Of course, we have specific goals we’re trying to attain, like losing weight or gaining muscle, but at the end of the day, we’re trying to progress in some way.
Now, I can’t say for you, but I want to make more gains. I’m not just talking muscle wise, but increasing my strength (that’s number 1 for me), controlling my body better, and being in better condition.
So, what do we need if we want any progress and gains to happen, whether building muscle, strength, power, endurance, flexibility, aesthetics, etc?
First, we have to be committed to the process.
The moment you realize that you’ll be in a much better place. But, if you’re reading this then I’m assuming you’re already committed to getting stronger and into better shape, so what else do we need?
We need intensity because it’s the force that gives us the ability to change our bodies for the better.
Try doing a heavy squat or deadlift without intensity…not gonna happen.
Not only will it not happen there’s a good chance that you’ll snap yo shit up too.
So, how do we be intense?
There are many answers, but I think you got to want it. You got to want to lift heavier, run faster, jump higher, get a bigger booty, or whatever else you’re trying to accomplish.
If you want it then odds are you’ll be more intense and work hard for it.
Because it will matter to you. You’ll start to understand that to get to “X” I have to do A, B, and C first, like doing things outside the gym to be successful in the gym (click HERE to know what I’m talking about).
This will lead to more intensity in the gym because you’re connected with the work you’re doing to achieve your goal (strength, power, aesthetics, functionality, etc.) by not wanting the effort you put in to go to waste.
So, what exactly is intensity:
Doing something with the highest force you’re capable of doing.
Simple as that.
Now, don’t get it twisted. Just because you or I have intensity doesn’t mean we’ll progress in a linear fashion. Rarely is progression strictly linear. However, if you’re lacking intensity during your workouts you’re selling yourself short of your full potential, and not working hard enough. Intensity gives us passion, and that extra effort we need to progress further, with more efficiency.
You may have the best program in the world tailored to your every need, but if you don’t show up and train with intensity, and just work really freaking hard, then you’ll leave behind gains and progress that were there waiting for you.
Sounds like a no-brainer, but rarely is intensity consistently practiced.
Do you have to be so intense that you become so serious that you become an asshole about it, and that gym douche bag who grunts and yells with every rep, and purposefully puffs his chest out with arms held wide (a.k.a. imaginary lat syndrome).
In fact, I encourage you to have fun, smile, and laugh often through your workout (check out this article about smiling more in the gym by clicking HERE).
With that said, when it’s time to step-up to the plate, or rather the barbell, bench, rack, or pull-up bar, you better give it your best intense effort.
Don’t be shy or timid about it. Just do it.
Recently, for example, I did just that — I was timid. I tried a heavy single in the squat and approached it with apprehension. I’m ashamed of it, but I won’t lie. I let the negative insurgency get the best of me by psyching myself out. I was out of my flow and lacked intensity.
But, you know what? I came back for a second time and I squatted 355 to full depth like it was nothing…easy.
The first time I squatted the barbell I was weak with no intensity, and almost failed (in my mind I did).
Second time, however, I let myself go, and brought out the intensity I needed to do it right and smashed it.
I’m on my way to 405, which is a big deal to me, so why am I holding back?
There’s no reason to, so that’s why showing up with intensity matters because that’s how we break plateaus and hit PRs.
Remember, if you fail you can always try again.
But, what fails your progress is not giving the intense effort to do whatever we’re working on in the gym with unrelenting fervor, and passion to get better in some way — stronger, faster, bigger, leaner, discovering character, or whatever it may be — no matter how small the improvement.
(Click HERE to get what I’m saying).
That’s why we need to be intense when we train. It will look different person to person, but just be intense in your own way, and you’ll be on your way to making more gains than you thought you could.
If you don’t believe just look at the dude pictured for this article. It’s none other than Stan “The White Rhino” Efferding (a.k.a. the strongest bodybuilder in the world). He’s a freak of nature with stupid strength, and one of the leading authorities and people in the fitness industry to get strong and build muscle.
He’ll tell you first hand that the programming doesn’t matter as much as you think it does. You have to want it and just train freaking hard (just listen to his rant about it HERE — worth the 15 minutes).
And, try not to be intimidated by Stan, or someone like him, either.
The point is that you can have your own remarkable results (like Stan), in some way, if you just train with some fire in you.
Whatever makes you have that remember it, and you’ll start to notice your progress accelerate, not to mention you’ll feel great at the same time. Once that happens, you’ll begin to understand that intensity matters, and start to do the little things (getting better sleep, eating better foods, etc.) that help you be more consistent.
Consistency leads to success. Throw in intensity, and you’ve got a winning combination to smash your goals.
It’s a struggle, but a struggle worth doing.
Thanks for reading, and feel free to comment down below to share your thoughts.
Until next time, be strong and be you!