"Ruts Are Part Of The Game" (#168)

When it comes to training, nutrition and motivation, it's easy to get side tracked. I don't care who you are, a rut or lack of motivation is bound to smack you in the face eventually. And guess what? That's perfectly OK and normal! Ruts may be triggered by cold weather, over-training, under-training, lack of sleep, poor nutritional choices, or just stress. Stress isn't necessarily bad, even good stressors on the body can just be too much.

When that rut hits you, take a step back, a few days off from the gym to reset yourself, and come back with a vengeance. Don't let your self pity party take over for too long, get your ass back up on the horse and go dominate. These ruts are a great time to refocus on your goals, on your daily habits, and to de-clutter your life of all the things that just aren't important. There are so many time eaters and energy drainers that we allow to take over our lives. It can be social media, work stressors, negative people and negative thoughts. Slowly eliminating these from your life and putting more time into your mind and body will quickly have you feeling better and rut free.

Training should be your happy place! It's where you go to get rid of any stress and tension and to earn your endorphins (feel good hormones). Ruts are part of the game and you have to understand that they pass quickly, and after reevaluating your priorities you can go back full force. Setting up a weekly training schedule and getting your mind and body used to that schedule will help with avoiding ruts. Every week you should set up which days you will go train and follow through with it, don't skip training days! Setting small, attainable goals also keeps you out of those ruts. This is why it's so important to challenge yourself with team events we put together, or even simpler things like walking a certain distance in the park. Don't be afraid to challenge yourself and try new things, you may just love it!

Discipline, or lack there of, is another big reason for ruts. When you lose focus on a goal and your training has no purpose, it's much easier to fall off the wagon. Simplifying and organizing your days, weeks and months will lead you down the road to success. Taking control of your schedule gives you a lot of power to do exactly what you want to do. That control and discipline will be your defense against those dreaded ruts.

Lastly, just going through the motions and putting no real effort in during your sessions is a huge problem and can cause you to fall into a rut. Skipping out on a proper warm-up, playing on your phone during a session, talking too much during a class, and just not focusing when it's go time will cause you to fall off track. Your gym time is your time for you. You train to look, move and feel better, and you have to come first. It's not selfish to put yourself first, it's self care. A strong, confident you makes everyone around you better!