TEAM BLOG: ADVANCEMENT '13

A blog by the Next Level  2013 Advancement Team.  

This blog provides the insight, in-jokes and inspiration of a team in action.  Each post is by a team member as their journey continues.  

In The Next Level, an "Advancement Team" is a team built of experienced athletes designed to "advance" the program.  The spring 2013 Advancement Team is comprised of eight men: Tom Keon, Phil Cohen, Stephen Cyr, Seth Carbonneau, Stephen Forgione. Phil Biondo, Yarza Winn and Chris Noonan.  

Each post represents only the views of it's poster, and is not intended as a reflection of the opinions, views or beliefs of any other teammate, the team as a whole or The Next Level.  

Follow these men as they make their marks on a small corner of history.

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Inspiration.

posted by Stephen Cyr

What Gets Me Going?

Inspiration. It's that little voice inside our heads that constructs the vision or the ideal we are striving for. It's like a stomach, and when properly fed and fueled it can help us push beyond what we believed ourselves to be capable of.

People always throw out diet and gym work as being the two major components of bodybuilding. With silly quotes like “it 90% diet bro,” or “bodybuilding breaks down 75% diet 25% effort.” (I'm sure everyone that subscribes to these numerical divisions has strong scientific support to back it up.)

But it's not the work nor the diet that gets you in the gym. There is no chicken or the egg debate in bodybuilding. Before the journey can begin there must first be inspiration.

Inspiration is not stagnant or singular; it evolves as we do: a subconscious coach that speaks to our inner most desires. Whether the inspiration drives your love for fitness, bodybuilding, strongman – or doing taxes.  Inspiration is an intangible well of resources that is rarely tapped in order to ascend whichever of life’s ladders you choose to climb.

So my point in all this is that while inspiration is unique to each of us, there might be a chance that by sharing what inspires us, may inspire the others on this team. So I am gonna go through what my favorite lead up to a workout is, and what gets me in the mood to train hard.

First off, I don’t like to eat within an hour of going to the gym. Getting a solid meal in before that hour period is usually the best. Something with both carbs and protein and low in fat. Once that hour hits my internal starts automatically telling me to start getting in the mood.

That mood starts with the clothes, putting on however many layers of gym rat clothes I own. Then the next thing is (if I have the time) to throw on some YouTube videos of bodybuilding, or famous speeches, or any sort of motivational thing. I let that play while I pack up my bag with my post workout protein, and whatever things I need for the gym.

As I watch the video and pack my stuff, I can feel my body waking up. I start to imagine the feeling of the gym; the enjoyment I am going to receive from the workout and the steps I will be taking on the timeline that I have laid before myself. As these external areas of interest move into focus, thoughts about the next contest, my current training plan, my current diet (or lack there of) all come into view.  

Yet along with all that I never lose track of recalling the base enjoyment I've always received from lifting. It is so strong sometimes I have to remind myself that I need a plan going in and that I can’t simply run in and throw some weight around without any sort of direction.

I train to maintain a balance between my frenzy and my plan. This doesn’t always work out perfectly; sometimes I don’t have time to do half or any of these things.

So what are some of the things that get you pumped for the gym? Is it the clothes you wear, the music you listen to (my favorite is Black Sabbath), the videos you watch or something you think about?

Lets share what inspires us and see if we can inspire one another.