November 9, 2016

Build Muscle with Passion

woman dumbbelll raises

A study by Concordia University in Montreal found something interesting about our generation. We need passion in what we’re doing to stay with it, but we’ve come to view working out as tedium and drudgery.

You’re just not going to stay with an activity that you perceive in a negative way. For our own sake, we have to flip the script and change our way of thinking about this. Think muscle sensuality versus dreary pain and gain.

Working out can be a very enjoyable and rewarding experience. Heck, you can even get high from it thanks to the release of Endorphins that resistance training triggers.

How’d we get here? Maybe it was something in the way our gym teachers and coaches approached working out that programmed our heads to see it as a negative thing.

Which would you rather have today? A sensual, nearly orgasmic experience or misery?

Wait, I know your saying that sounds a bit far fetched. Sure, both activities have some sweating and grunting associated with them, but they are two different things. Right?

Well, both activities produce Endorphins. That’s the natural drug in us that is a response to stress. It has a powerful, positive effect on our well being. Both activities produce it.

Muscle Sensuality & Passion:

Here’s an excerpt from the article by Concordia. I think they’re on to something when it comes to flipping this script and looking at it in a positive mindset — with passion not dread.

“In the study recently published in the International Journal of Wellbeing, James Gavin, a professor in Concordia’s Department of Applied Human Sciences, investigates our motivations for exercise, from looking good to having fun. He finds that for the Baby Boom generation, passion is the most important motivator — a fact the fitness industry should embrace.

“As the first generation to embrace exercise, Baby Boomers continue going to the gym, yet more out of necessity than for the challenge and enjoyment of physical activity.”

He says that once we connect with our passion, motivation can flow backward to sustain participation in cross-training activities: for instance a person will be happier to put in time on the treadmill if she knows it will help her have more fun skiing in winter.

Gavin’s study surveyed 1,885 participants at YMCA facilities across Montreal and examined responses by age-group — breaking answers down by decade, from the teens to 50 and over. Of four major motivation categories, “toned and fit” was the top motivator in all age groups, followed by “stress reduction.”

Yet perhaps more unexpectedly for a generation who came of age in the era when exercise became a way of life, the two final categories, “mental toughness” (defined as embracing activity for its adventure and challenge) and “fun and friends” (social motivations), both declined with increasing age.

Gavin says he’s surprised by the findings, but less so when he surveys the scene at his local gym.

“Exercise is often perceived as a necessary evil. When I go to a gym and look around, I don’t see a lot of excitement or laughter — people are putting in their time almost as prisoners on their solitary workout stations. They’re working away, and relieved when it’s over.”

8538380 - gym & fitness. smiling elderly couple working out. isolated over white background

We need to re-program out thinking and view every workout as a rewarding and fun experience. Crank up some great music. Pop in some bubble gum. Whatever you like to do.

We’re too old to force ourselves through a dreary workout experience.

Our workouts have to be enjoyable, something we look forward to doing. We’re not here to punish ourselves. We’re here to improve our lives and feel good.

Mind-Muscle Connection

If you Google that phrase and you’ll see a million responses. It’s an old-time concept in the bodybuilding world. As with all things in the bodybuilding world, it can become ridiculously complicated.

So before you search that phrase, let me give you a brief explanation.

Our muscles don’t think, obviously, everything they do is a response to a signal from the brain. But keeping a Mind-Muscle Connection going is really about staying mindful of what you’re doing, rather than simply going through the motions and simply trying to finish a set number of reps.

 Continuous Feedback

To keep that Mind-Muscle Connection strong, you need to focus your mind on the targeted muscle and the tension the movement is creating in it. The feeling. It’s not about how heavy the resistance is, it’s about that feeling – the controlled strain – you are placing on the muscle.

You want to feel the “pump” from blood surging into the muscle to provide it with nutrients. That begins the process of growth. If you focus on the feeling, on the powerful and positive effects training will have on your body and life… you will get Muscle sensuality.

Thanks for stopping by!

Please feel free to leave a comment below or drop me a line at: brian@boomermuscle.com

Facebook Comments

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below

Leave a Reply: