You know how top athletes get themselves in a flow state? It has to do with finding the right level of challenge.
Today I want to share with you an exerpt from my new book, CONVERSATIONS WITH FITNESS PROFESSIONALS: Experts’ Guide to Phenomenal Fitness and Lasting Physical transformation
Yesterday, I shared with you the 8 Core fitness Mindsets I learned from 7 Fitness Professionals in my latest video. If you missed it, go check it! It’ll open your eyes.
If you want to not only transform your physique and get in the best shape of your life, having the right program or workout isn’t enough.
Sure, it might take a few inches off your waistline for a while.
…or it might get you feelin’ jacked for a while.
But it won’t lead to lasting transformation.
That is unless the right mindsets are used to get you showing up and putting in 100% long term.
Alright! So today, I want to share with you an exerpt straight from the pages of CONVERSATIONS.
Core Fitness Mindset #4: Challenge Yourself
If you can master the art of challenging yourself effectively, you’ll never have to motivate yourself again to train.
I did some research on flow state and I think you’ll like what I discovered.
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Core Fitness Mindset #4: Challenge Yourself
Shawna Kaminski told us about the power of challenging ourselves.
When you strive to get the body you want, you set yourself a mere goal to workout, exercise and eat a certain way but if it doesn’t ignite you, that goal may not be achieved.
Setting yourself a challenge, on the other hand, gets you far more engaged.
You can either set yourself a goal to lose 10 pounds and burn 2 inches of fat or: you could challenge yourself to run a 4 minute mile, sprint for 400 meters or swim 100 m in under a minute.
You can set yourself a goal to put three inches of muscle on your arms or: you could challenge yourself to complete 10 pull-ups, develop the strength and skill to do a single arm push up, or hold a tricep dip position for a full minute.
The power of challenging yourself is the way to grow and become a better, stronger, faster and fitter version of yourself. If you challenge yourself to progress and beat where you were yesterday, your motivation will skyrocket and nothing can stop you.
If you merely set yourself the goal of showing up at the gym and putting in your time, going through the rigmarole, you’re not only going to have a lower chance of reaching your goal and staying the course, you will also handicap your growth.
Your fitness needs to have that spark, something to spur you on and something to inspire you. Something to make it worth it.
With that said, attaining maximum growth from challenging yourself is a delicate balance.
You may have heard that growth happens outside your comfort zone. that’s not entirely true. contrary to popular belief, it actually happens best on the edge of your comfort zone. The edge is a bridge that will take you from where you are now to where you want to be.
That means you need to set yourself a challenge that pushes you, without breaking you. The last thing you want is to be so challenged that you end up highly stressed and frustrated, you’re over training to the point of self harm and injuries or you’re trying to perform skills that are so far beyond your capability that you risk harming your body.
You have to find that sweet spot where you’re training hard enough to continually grow but not overdoing it.
Where is the sweet spot?
Well…If you want to challenge yourself so that you not only grow and progress sustainably, but also keep yourself motivated, then check out this equation:
Challenge x Skill = Flow
Flow state is the sweet spot you want to access in your training, in your workouts and in your fitness.
When you access flow state, you’re in a state of optimal performance, optimal focus and making optimal gains.
Nobel prize winning Hungarian Psychologist Mihalyi Chikszentmihalyi discovered a model to being in the zone, also referred to as the flow or flow state. This is the state that top athletes have trained themselves to go into to perform at their best.
You know that state when you’re in the groove? You’re training hard, your mind is in no other place but your sport or your workout, and nothing else exists in that moment? It is like the rest of the world just drops away.
That is a moment where your level of challenge and your level of skill are equal to one another. That’s flow state and its the result of finding the perfect balance between challenging yourself so that your ability is being pushed hard enough to make progress and having enough skills to just enjoy your sport or workout so you can perform at your best.
If one is higher, you will not get that sweet spot and, in fact, you’re more likely to have a less effective workout and less of a good time. If the level of challenge is too high, you’ll experience stress, anxiety, and frustration. Not fun.
If your skill outweighs the challenge, you’ll experience apathy, boredom and disengagement and you will not make any gains or progress because you won’t be engaged.
There are 4 levels of mastery
- Level 1: Unconscious incompetence
- Level 2: Conscious incompetence
- Level 3: Conscious competence
- Level 4: Unconscious competence
Flow state happens right between level 3 and level 4. Some of the best athletes in the world have developed world class skills by learning to find their flow state and train themselves in their sport in that state.
You want to progress, right? And you want to enjoy it too. This is why the treadmill will only get you so far. Look for something that doesn’t just move you towards your fitness goals. Look for something that challenges and engages you so that your fitness goals can be lasting, enjoyable and worth it.
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I go in greater depths covering these core fitness mindsets in my long awaited book, Conversations With Fitness Professionals. Which you can claim a free paperback copy sent to your door.
Oh, the experts that shared with me their core fitness mindsets…. they’re the same ones in Conversations with Fitness Professionals. You’ll get to read these conversations.
I’ve also put together some bonuses for you as a way saying “Thanks Man” for all the support putting this together. You suggested and voted for these.
Bonus #1—Inspired Workouts
Bonus #2–Curated Conversations
Bonus #3–Conversation With Logan Christopher
All I ask is that you pay for the shipping so I don’t lose my shirt.
Til next time,
Keep training, Keep working out
And keep aspiring to become yourself!
Inspired by fitness,
Founder of FitnessAces.com