Fitness: Accountability

gym

So….how are your New Year’s Resolutions going? Let me guess…you’ve successfully gone to the gym every day, you’ve stopped drinking, you’ve kept in touch with all of your family and friends, spent less money, and are eating really healthily. Not quite? I’m just bugging. Making changes to your routine or lifestyle is really hard, and just because you start something on New Year’s Day (the day you are hung over from NYE for that matter), doesn’t mean that you will be successful.

I didn’t have a New Year’s resolution to go harder at the gym, per say. I had actually planned to kick my routine (or what was left of it after the holiday season) into high gear, learn some new things, and be accountable for it. I didn’t really have a whole schwack of new year’s resolutions actually. It was more a theme. No more excuses (and work on developing some good habits). Between masc and Homorazzi, it was becoming very easy for me to make excuses as to why I couldn’t make it to the gym on that particular day. Some days, it was simply that I really needed a new playlist, but hadn’t made one yet, so naturally, I couldn’t go.

Accountability with fitness means you aren’t going at it alone, someone else is along for the ride, and you can get away with less. I was in my best shape when I was with my ex Jamie (who used to be a personal trainer) because we worked out together, every morning, before work – no ifs, ands, or buts. We just did it. I didn’t want to let him down, and frankly I was really happy with the results I was getting and didn’t want to not go. But times change.

Being Accountable to Your Goals

With my personal trainer Rick at Steve Nash Fitness World, I am now accountable to certain days working out with him, as well as what I do on my own on off days. I’ve also taken photos at the beginning, and will throughout, so I can see my progress. I’ve also took body composition and measurements at the start, so I can also track my progress that way as well. And, gulp, I’m sharing my progress with you. I’ve included my pictures thus far (below) and I’ll include starting measurements and where I’m at on my next update, which will be in a future Behind The Cast posting.

Aside from being accountable, I believe it’s important to have S.M.A.R.T. goals (for those that haven’t heard this term before, it stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. With what I’m working on right now, I’m focusing on building chest & arm muscles, as well as tightening up the core. So, my workouts coincide with that.

If You Fail To Plan, You Plan To Fail

It’s all well and good to have the intention of working out and eating healthy, but if you don’t act then there’s really no point. Right now, this is working for me because I have set times with my trainer. I have to show up and I have to plan my schedule accordingly. Suddenly I have more time for the gym now? No, it’s simply because I am planning to have time for the gym. I have made it a priority, to be incorporated into my routine. Another critical factor with fitness & nutrition is your eating/drinking habits. What you eat can make a night and day difference in your results. I’m still working on this one, getting back into the habit of eating regularly and making smart choices. Cooking for yourself isn’t always easy :/ , but – I’ll make it work.

Have Fun

One thing I’ve learned from Rick, is that I should have more fun with my workout routine. Switch it up more often, and include days for doing something different – soccer, hike, bootcamp (I’m going to one on Saturday!)etc. Not everything has to be on the treadmill and with weights. This year, I am going to change up my routine more often, keep my music fresh, and get outside more.

Well that’s all. I hope that sharing my experience will perhaps help motivate you guys or give you ideas, and – I hope to learn from you guys as well!

So here are my pictures. Hasn’t been that long so no huge results, but at least there will be something to compare to as keep at it.

Progress So Far – January 4th – January 19th

fitness-progress-abs-jan4-19th

Hmm – like I said, diet hasn’t changed that much (lol- abs), but the rest is starting to look bigger! (yeah?)

fitness-progress-biceps-jan4-19th

Next time I should get a haircut before doing a picture update – haha!

fitness-progress-front-jan4-19th

I’ve noticed the most difference so far in my arms and chest (and felt it a lot in by butt and quads from lunges and squats)

Discussion

  • How often do you change your workout routine?
  • How important is music to you at the gym and how often do you update your playlist?
  • What time of day do you workout?
  • Do you workout with a partner?
  • What is your workout routine?
  • What are some suggestions for quick/healthy meals to have? (Both at home, and for bringing to work)
  • Jared

    Glad to hear you’re challenging yourself to stay in shape. I find that most people in the world today lack accountability for themselves altogether. I workout with my friend on Kingsway Fitness World (which sometimes has the gayest circuit music, it’s funny) in the morning. For the moment we’re going mon-friday, and have kept this up for 6 weeks now. Eventually when we’re at our 6 month mark we’re gonna move it down to 3 days a week. Our workout goes as this (weights are as of this past week):

    Monday/Thursday:
    Bench Press – (125) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Machine Flies – (90-125) 3 sets, 10 Reps
    Barbell Curls – (65) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Tricep Barbell Extensions – (50) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Wide-Grip Pull-ups – 2 Sets, 10 Reps
    Close-Grip Pull-ups – 2 Sets, 10 Reps
    Decline Press – (140) 3 sets, 10 Reps
    Ab Circuit: Crunchy Frogs, Toe Touches, Scissors – 3 Sets, 30, 30, 25 reps Respectively

    Tuesday/Friday:
    Barbell Flies – (50) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Shoulder Shrugs – (45-50) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Double-arm Back Rows – (110-130) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Dumbless Shoulder Press – (50) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Wide-grip Lat Pulldowns – (110-130) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Forward Arm Raises (25) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Back Flies (75-90) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Bicep Cable Curls (Fri) (90-100) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Tricep Dips (Fri) – 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Cable Curl/Tricep Rope Pulldown Superset (Tues) – (80) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Ab Circuit: Weighted Pole Twists, Left and Right Side Crunches, Side-to-sides – 3 Sets, 50, 20, 20, 50 Reps respectively.

    Wednesday:
    Barbell Squats – (135) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Split Squats/Lunges – (25) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Weighted Leg Raises – (30) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Back Raises w/ Plate – (45) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Toe Presses – (340) 3 Sets, 10 Reps
    Side V-Ups – 1 set, 30 Reps each side

    Some people might say this is a bit overkill, but it works for the two of us, and there’s been significant changes in just 6 weeks. We also force each other to challenge ourselves by adding 5lbs to each exercise every week or two so that we can continue the muscle hypertrophy (along with performing slow reps over fast reps). For anyone wanting to stick to a gym plan, having a workout buddy makes the biggest difference in the world because you can push each other, and a good conversation each gym session is fun.

    As for my meals, I eat 6 meals a day and try to take in a minimum of 3,000 Calories a day (My metabolism is extremely fast :S). My meal plan will typically resemble something like this:

    Meal 1:
    1 Egg Yolk – 4-6 Egg whites (You can get separated egg whites)
    1 Bowl of Kashi Cereal w/ 1% milk
    1 Cup of Delicious V-8 (I really like it!)

    Meal 2:
    Protein Isolate shake (Isolate is almost pure protein)
    1 Banana
    Another cup of V8

    Meal 3-5:
    Well portioned amount of either Turkey, Chicken, Wild Salmon and sometimes Steak/Pork (Since these aren’t lean proteins)
    White Rice (Because I’m Asian like that)
    Salad
    V-8

    Meal 6: Low Fat, Low Sugar Whey Protein Weight Gainer (I need this to keep my calorie count up)

    Diet is more important than the workout itself, but I wouldn’t go crazy strict with sticking to a specific diet plan because you’ll get bored, die, and not want to continue with your routine altogether. It’s nice to treat yourself sometimes. Wow, I wrote a lot. Sorry!

  • Patrick

    Wow, thanks for the comments and all the info, Jared! Certainly appreciated and will come in handy 🙂 Yeah, I think once I’m done the personal training I’m going to start working out with a friend again because I know I push myself more that way, and I’m more accountable. Loved this line: “…you’ll get bored, die, and not want to continue with your routine altogether.” HAHA. Thanks again 🙂

  • Jared

    Haha np. Working out is a really hard discipline, and I hope your resolution sticks with you for a long time to come. Plus, I hear Steve Nash is where all the pretty boys go, so that should be some motivation? 😛

  • bruin

    WOW. This was a great post.

    Patrick – Good job for writing this and exposing yourself picture wise for the world to see. By doing this, I think the pressure is truly on and you hold yourself not only to YOURSELF but to your readers also! Great key points. I lost my gym new year’s resolution by day 3 of January hah. It was actually my Taylor Lautner resolution, not NY Res. But good job! keep it up. I do see the improvements in the chest and arms. you are going to be a canadian hottie and give your roommate a run for his money haha! BTW you look tanner in the 2nd set of pics. spray? hopefully you are not UV’ing yourself to death in that box.

    Jared – WOW, great great layout. that just gave me a headache. And thats where personal trainers come into play. Working out is a very complicated and intense science, literally. You are breaking everything down like how I break down biological mechanisms in school. Whew. Keep it up. 6 meals a day is harder than it seems too.

    KEEP IT UP!

  • Patrick, you’re adorable and we’re going “boxer shopping” this weekend 😉 x

  • Mitch

    Good article Patty! I second Bruin’s note. The pressure is on for you to get HUGE! Like Schwarzenegger huge. Like no neck huge!

  • bruin

    giltman just had a 2(x)ist sale, adam i think you missed it. you should do an underwear modeling post

  • I love Adam’s backhanded compliment lol