In order to continue progressing, you need to eliminate any distractions which could interrupt your training sessions. Being unfocused can quickly and negatively impact the intensity of your workout, leading to subpar sessions.
One of my secrets to success is my ability to avoid distractions while training. I allow nothing to come between me and my goals in the gym.
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It’s a shame that the same cannot be said for the vast majority of people who train; a quick glance around the gym floor confirms this. In a world which operates with 24/7 online connectivity, people have forgotten what it feels like to train free of mobile phones.
Having witnessed more mediocre workouts than I care to remember simply because people allow themselves to be distracted from the task at hand, I’ve reached my boiling point. This article contains my six top tips to eliminate distractions while training.
6 Tips to Remove Gym Distractions
#1 - Get Focused
Putting a halt on distractions starts before the workout has even begun. When the brain is exclusively focused on the task at hand it becomes adept at shutting everything else out.
In the hour leading up to your training session, start envisioning the workout and what you're about to experience to the point you can feel your muscles reacting. On your way to the gym, put some music on in the car that energizes you and wakes up your system for the work you’re about to complete. Finally, consuming a pre-workout supplement that delivers a sharp rise in mental focus can help you get in the zone.
Some of the best ingredients for this are PurCaf Organic Caffeine for the energy boost. Additionally, look for taurine as it possesses the power to help excite neurological stimulation, and Pure Citrulline which can help enhance blood flow around the body.
Once you step foot through the gym door, your brain should already be fixated on training and nothing else. Following these steps will help achieve this heightened state of mental focus before you even pick up a weight.
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#2 - Wear Headphones
Headphones are great for killing distractions because they transform the workout into an individualized endeavor. It is you, the weights, and the music pumping against your eardrums. This helps sustain focus by making the workout more visceral.
For many people, music is a powerful tool which can quickly pump you up and create an internal environment that’s focused on working hard. When I have my headphones in, external distractions have less opportunity to get in the way.
Secondly, headphones are an instant conversation killer. Even when my battery runs out I will keep my headphones on so they act as a barrier to conversation in the gym.
It might seem selfish or rude, but I am there to train, not chat. This should also be true for you too.
#3 - Don’t Engage in Conversation
Being approachable in the gym means you're more likely to get caught up in conversation. What was meant to be a polite “hello” can quickly turn into a five-minute chat. All of a sudden, blood has stopped pumping around the body and your mental vigor has diminished.
These sensations can be incredibly difficult to reignite. For the purposes of training with complete intensity, you cannot afford to let this occur. Do your best to avoid conversations, often a simple head nod and a small wave are enough to let people know you’re hard at work and not able to chat.
If somebody still tries to start a conversation, politely highlight you're short on time and will find them at the end of your session to talk. You must take control your environment or suffer the consequences of being controlled by it.
#4 - Track Your Time
Distractions are more likely to strike when there is spare time. By tracking rest intervals closely between sets, it is much easier to limit the room for distractions.
With the appropriate level of intensity - when every set is bringing you to physical failure - you should need every second to recover, not become distracted. Keep rest intervals short and be stringent with timekeeping.
Another tip is to give yourself a limited amount of time to complete your whole workout. Affording yourself a modest timescale to complete the entire workout forces you to become more focused and less tolerant of distractions.
#5 - Pick the Right Gym
The correct training environment is imperative to progress, one reason for this is the fact that distractions are less prevalent. Serious training gyms are generally occupied by people who appreciate the value of training intensity and are there to put in the work. It’s a place these people value because it allows them to train without distraction while making all the noise they need to.
Proper gyms provide the correct environment to do this, and even encourage it. By seeking out this training atmosphere, distractions will be minimal as you’re surrounded by like-minded people.
Regarding the gym, select an appropriate time of day. Everybody knows that at 6 PM on a Monday night most gyms are going to be impossible to get a good chest workout in.
Try and pick a time where you're able to train with freedom rather than having to wait around for machines or shuffle the order of your training plan. Having to wait for equipment can quickly kill your pump, and having to perform exercises out of order can create mental stress – another distraction to deal with.
#6 - Go Off the Grid
If you're like most of the world, your cell phone is glued to your hand or head for most of the day. In the gym this needs to change, you should be unreachable for this short period of time.
Sustaining the right level of mental discipline while training can be a difficult task on its own. External stress from your work or personal life cannot come into the gym because it will crush your focus. The only way to prevent this from happening is to leave your cell phone off the gym floor.
Distractions come in all shapes and sizes. Boredom and stress are things which come from within, only you can address these distractions. Conversations are something your environment is providing and you have to learn to deal with, even if it means telling people to wait.
Regardless of the source, distractions must be eliminated during training otherwise progress will be limited. Sculpting your ideal physique requires everything to be done without compromise. Every set counts and needs to be done to complete failure.
Rushing your training to get back to your conversation about “the game” won’t cut it. The neurological connection between your brain and muscle must always be nourished, which is achieved through unparalleled concentration on every rep.
Tenacious intensity and distractions are mutually exclusive, you must pick which is more important to you.