“There’s a new supplement on the market that guarantees you’ll increase your weights and reps every single workout!”
you might think it’s bullshit, or you might think “Where can I get it?”
The truth is that you don’t need a supplement. You can get all these benefits from utilizing the awesome power of your mind! No this isn’t hocus pocus; it’s real, it’s observable and it’s demonstrable by anyone, anywhere, anytime!
There are a few little ‘mind hacks’ I use to increase the effectiveness of my workouts. Here are 4 ways to tap into the power of your mind to build muscle faster:
(1) See The Finished Result! I put this as number 1 as I think it is the most powerful mind hack there is! It’s simple; during any given set you visualize exactly how you want that body part to look – Make it juicy!
For example, let’s say you want big build biceps. During every set of your bicep workout you clearly visualize your arms as if they already were that size. Pick a scenario that makes you explode with enthusiasm! It doesn’t matter how dumb you think it is, you’re the only one that knows about it so allow yourself to dream big.
Maybe you’re walking along in a T-Shirt with your arms bursting out of it. Maybe someone wolf-whistles at you or you catch members of the opposite sex looking at you. Maybe you’re having sex with that person you like and your abs look amazing! Run the picture or movie in your head over and over again as you lift.
Who cares, go wild! It’s for your benefit only so don’t be afraid to think anything that triggers that explosion of passion inside of you. I guarantee you that this tip alone will increase your reps. This works so do it!
(2) Aggressive Music. I was a rocker growing up so this one’s easy for me. I have mellowed significantly in my 20’s so I don’t really listen to heavy music anymore. However, nothing beats it for working out.
Whether it’s rock, hip hop, or trance music, anything with a bit of balls behind it works a treat. I you don’t like the radio at the gym, bring your iPod with you and crank it up!
(3) Know Your Target! You do keep a workout journal don’t you? Before every set in every workout you should be looking at how you performed last week and having at least 1 rep higher in your head at all time. Here’s the scenario…
You’re about to perform your third set in your chest workout. You look at set 3 in last week’s workout log, you got 9 reps. In your head you start repeating , “10, 10, 10, 10, 10…..” Keep doing this until you start the set. This programs the subconscious with the instructions you want it to carry out.
You’d be amazed at how often you reach failure prematurely. Setting the target focuses the mind to know where you need to fail to spark new muscle growth. Again, you don’t need to understand why and how it works, just know that it does and put it into practice.
(4) Tell Yourself It’s Light! “Lightweight Baby!” yells Ronnie Coleman before he starts a set. There’s a method to his madness though. He’s preparing his mind to accept that he can lift the weight with ease.
I have done this for years without really being aware of it. I look at the weight before the set and repeat to myself, “It’s light, it’s light…” though now I’ve started to say, “Lightweight baby!“. Remember, it’s important to mean what you say. The words themselves have no effect, it’s the meaning behind them that affects the mind.
Please do not neglect this information. Try it and see it work for yourself. You can change the recommendations to suit your own needs e.g. different visualizations, different words, different music…it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that YOU find a way to stimulate YOUR mind.
It’s a private exercise, no-one’s going to think you’re nuts so be as outrageous or crazy as you like.
Also, if you have mind hacks of your own, I’d love to hear them.
image credit: FeelFreeTravel
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Mark, you reminded me of the Thin Lizzy song, Rocker with your post. How did our people (the Irish) end up blessed with so many talents? Smart, good looking, musical, funny, and amazing in the sack… the list goes on and on…
Anywhoo, another great post. These ones about mental work are my favorite. Our minds are constatly creating the world we see in our heads. Whatever you can picture in your mind, you can become. I really believe that. I think that was Arnold’s secret.
One tip, pictures of scantily clad (or nekkid, as I prefer) women seem to help me ramp up my testosterone and really “pump” the reps out. Yes, I’m talking about lifting weights! 🙂
I leave you with my favorite Phil Lynot quote:
I am your main man if you’re looking for trouble
I’ll take no lip ’cause no ones tougher than me
If I kicked your face you’d soon be seeing double
Hey little girl, keep your hands off me ’cause I’m a rocker
I’m a rocker!
I’m a roller too, baby
I’m a rocker!
It’s funny, but that’s exactly what I have been doing lately during my workouts. I love to go to u-tube and watch women bodybuilders. Their bodies stay in my mind and I think about them during my workouts and this helps me push myself more.
I really like this post! It’s crazy how much the right attitude and mindset can help during my workouts!
I usually think of one video I once watched on youtube which shows how the actors from the movie “300” got ready for their roles.
The thought of their hard training just kindo motivates me! 🙂
Alright, have a nice one!
I am a big podcast listener, but I found that by listening to them while working out, I had a tendency to sit there and listen too often (i.e. “Wow what an interesting segment, when it’s over, I’ll do the next set). I have found out that hard core metal keeps me from focusing on it explicitly, plus it makes me angrier and feel more aggressive which I harness mentally to help me lift more. I really like this tip!
I had never thought of #s 1 or 4 before – I can’t wait to try them out. I guess it’s all about mind over matter!
@ Javacody – I dunno but it’s good to be Irish 😉 I have to try out your tip, looking forward to it!
Thanks everyone else for the comments and tips!
As always…I enjoy reading what you have posted here on your blog. I’ve also noticed that on my blog I have similar content to what you have here. I guess that’s why I keep coming back and visiting your blog. Keep up the good word…you’ve made a strong impression on me.
ama go try this