Hold yourself accountable (or be accountable to someone else), establish expectations (in writing) and guidelines. Be true to you! Your accountability will help you know the truth of your actions and efforts. If you fail to meet your established expectations or check points, you must accept that you have failed yourself, don't blame anyone else. Other people may be a factor in the failure, but they are not the entire cause. For example, your child is sick, you can't go to the gym. You must take care of your child first then, while they nap or rest, you do a 10 minute workout. Not an optimum workout, but enough to keep you on track mentally and physically. Accountability is key. It defines how you relate to your goals. Accountability helps give you consistent focus to reach your goals. It dictates whether or not you will complete each “stepping stone” to get to you goal.
If you have only 5-10 lbs to lose, the best and most simple dietary change you can make is to avoid all grains. That one simple change makes most people lose body fat and pounds in just 4 to 8 weeks. For a few weeks, eliminate grains such as brown bread, whole wheat, whole grain, multi-grain and so on. Two things will happen:first, you’ll lower your total carbohydrate intake as well as eliminate gluten. Then, this will guarantee you'll see results quickly. All grains aren't bad, nor should they all be eliminated. The exceptions to are rice, amaranth, and quinoa.
Part 2: Advanced tempo training. You may see some workout protocols with a four-digit formula for tempo. What exactly does this mean? The numbers represent the time in seconds (tempo) of each part of the repetition. For example, in a barbell chest press, 4212 means you would lower the barbell in four seconds, pause for two seconds at the chest, raise the bar in one second, and then pause for two seconds with the bar at extended arms before beginning the next rep.
Breaking each number down:
- First number: the eccentric part of the exercise. An eccentric contraction occurs when a muscle lengthens, such as when you lower the resistance during the lowering of a barbell in a biceps curl.
- Second number: the isometric pause in the stretched position. This pause usually occurs between the eccentric (lowering) phase and the concentric (lifting) phase of a repetition, such as when the barbell makes contact with the chest during the bench press. This position is usually called a “disadvantageous” position (i.e., poor leverage) of a lift. This pause can increase intramuscular tension, which can further boost strength.
- Third number: the concentric contraction. The concentric contraction occurs when a muscle shortens, such as when you curl your legs to your butt on the lying leg curl.
- Fourth number: the isometric pause in the shortened position. This is the ending phase of most lifts. There is a contraction that occurs at the end of the concentric phase, such as when a bench press is locked out. Muscles should be tense, not putting pressure on the joints (which some people do). This pause is in the “advantageous” position (i.e., good leverage) and can increase the involvement of fast-twitch fibers, the ones that increase strength and power.
Example: Bench Press
A 4213 tempo protocol for the bench press would mean you would:
- lower the barbell to your chest in four seconds
- pause for two seconds when the bar makes contact with your chest
- press the weight to extended arms in one second
- pause three seconds when the barbell is locked out
- begin your next repetition
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