Why I’m Not a Fan of (Most) Group Classes

Does this sound familiar at all?

You sign up for the new “it” class, either by yourself or with a couple of friends.

You’re a few weeks in, and making a TON of progress. You’re feeling more energized, getting leaner, and feeling stronger. The workouts are becoming so much easier than they were when you first started. You’re feeling motivated and it’s awesome.

Fast forward a few weeks, months, or even a year… and everything… stalls.

Your progress slows. The motivational talk that fired you up in the first few weeks now just seems repetitive. Your class instructor is more focused on their killer playlist than giving you individual attention.

Frankly, you’re just a little bored.

You start making excuses to skip class and stop going as often. Eventually you either fall off of your fitness habit altogether, or take up the next “it” class, and start the same cycle all over again.

Read moreWhy I’m Not a Fan of (Most) Group Classes

How to Keep a Beginner’s Mindset

When I first started training handstands nearly six years ago now, I had absolutely zero previous experience with the skill.

I didn’t do gymnastics growing up, and had no reason to believe I would ever be even remotely decent at a difficult skill like hand balancing.

Similarly, when I first started boxing a year and a half ago, I had zero experience other than hitting a punching bag as hard as I could (now I realize, with poor form) and punching a few holes in the wall growing up (sorry, Mom and Dad!).

Both experiences started out as extremely humbling and frustrating. I can’t tell you just how many times that I wanted to quit, to tell myself and others that I wasn’t a “natural” at either skill and move on to something else.

After all, no one but me would really care if I quit.

So why didn’t I?

Because I know that maintaining a beginner’s mindset in at least one area of my life is the best way to continue growing and progressing as an athlete and person in all areas of my life.

Read moreHow to Keep a Beginner’s Mindset

Workout Highs and Lows: Why They’re Normal and How to Deal With Them

workout highs and lows: why they're normal + how to deal with them

Throughout your fitness journey you’re bound to experience highs and lows. Even the most experienced athletes can attest to this.

“Highs and lows” can look different for everyone, but here are some common situations I hear about from students and clients:

…You experienced rapid progress at the start of your journey, but your gains are slowing down or have come to a standstill. (plateaus)

…You challenged yourself to start a new skills program or fitness plan, and you’re really struggling. (need to scale back)

…You were motivated and on a roll, but now you’re lacking inspiration and skipping workouts. (boredom/lack of interest, or life change)

…You’ve recently been injured and don’t know how to keep up with your goals while working below full capacity.

Do any of these sound familiar?

As you continue to challenge your body and push your limits, you’ll likely run into roadblocks at times. Whether your progress has slowed, your motivation is lacking, or you’re just not seeing the results you expected, rest assured that every athlete experiences challenges like this.

Here are some recommendations for getting past the “lows” and getting back to the “highs” of exercise – progress, health, and happiness!

Read moreWorkout Highs and Lows: Why They’re Normal and How to Deal With Them

Why Working Out Isn’t Just For Looks

Like so many people, when I first started my fitness journey, I worked out solely because I wanted to lose weight, get leaner, and feel better in my body.

And while there’s certainly nothing wrong with wanting to feel confident about how you look, in my experience working out for looks alone has several different issues with it:

  • Every time I would miss a workout, “cheat” on my diet, or eat dessert, I felt like a failure.
  • It wasn’t very easy to track my progress, since stepping on the scale alone isn’t a reliable measure of weight loss progress.
  • Working out to “look good” didn’t motivate me in the long-term, so I constantly struggled with consistency.

It wasn’t until I found other intrinsic reasons to work out that had nothing to do with my appearance that I was finally able to develop a lifelong fitness habit and become the become the athlete I had never before believed I could be.

Here are some really good reasons to work out (that have nothing to do with your appearance):

Read moreWhy Working Out Isn’t Just For Looks

How to Become a Workout Person for Life

You might not know this about me, but I wasn’t always a “workout person.”

Although I played soccer and basketball growing up, as soon as I left for college, I stopped doing any movement of pretty much any kind.

I didn’t go to the gym or work out. I didn’t have any fun active hobbies that I did regularly or play any sports. I barely even walked on a daily basis.

Not only did I gain the typical freshman fifteen (or twenty) as a result, I also had low energy, low self-esteem, and felt just super lost and unconfident about my life in general.

It really took finding fitness to get me out of that rut—but it didn’t happen overnight.

It took years of experimenting before I finally considered myself a “fitness person” and built a workout habit that finally stuck.

Here are my top tips to get there much quicker than I did:

Read moreHow to Become a Workout Person for Life

9 Reasons to Get Fit

get fit

We all want to be in great shape.

But many people want to get fit just to look good. Yet there are so many other reasons to get fit other than just for aesthetic reasons.

Because while there’s nothing wrong with wanting to get fit so you can feel good about your appearance, working out just for looks isn’t actually the best long-term motivation for working out and getting fit.

Here are 9 reasons to get fit today:

Read more9 Reasons to Get Fit

5 Reasons to Get Strong Today

There’s no question about it: being strong is becoming more and more cool.

Although professional athletes have always trained for performance, most of the general population mostly worked out for appearance reasons alone. Yet as the benefits of staying strong and fit throughout our lifetime are becoming more and more clear, both men and women are focusing more on strength—not just physique—as a reason to get fit.

We love feeling strong here at 12 Minute Athlete, and today we’re bringing you five really good reasons to get strong. Read them to get motivated and fired up, then check out our brand-new strength-building program below!

Read more5 Reasons to Get Strong Today

12 Minute Athlete HIIT Workouts: A Beginner's Guide

We know some of you guys have been with us for years now, but if you found 12 Minute Athlete just recently, this guide is for you.

There’s so much information out there that makes health and fitness look much more difficult than it really is. But at 12 Minute Athlete, we want to prove to you that working out can be much easier than you think, and keeping up a good workout routine isn’t really as hard as you may thought.

12 Minute Athlete is a great fit for you if you want to get in the best shape of your life, but you

  • Don’t have much time
  • Don’t like to have to go to the gym to lift weights
  • Don’t have much or any workout equipment
  • Don’t want to do long, boring hours of cardio
  • Want to get stronger and fitter in less time

You can get in the best shape of your life without a lot of time, equipment, or space. In this post, we’ll show you exactly what you need to know to get started with 12 Minute Athlete and start rocking the workouts today.

Read more12 Minute Athlete HIIT Workouts: A Beginner's Guide

Get Your Mind Right to Make Better Progress

When it comes to achieving your health and fitness goals, getting your mind right is at least as important as the physical work. 

Why? Because our bodies do what our minds believe.

When you’re trying to establish a new habit or learn something new, you have to first believe that eventually, you will be able to reach your goal. If you don’t, any amount of effort you put in will end up being useless, because you’ve already set yourself up to fail.

For example, if you start with the belief that you will be able to do whatever your goal is (with hard work, of course), then you’ll take the necessary actions that will help you to move forward and ultimately accomplish your goal. On the other hand, if you believe that no matter how hard you work, you won’t be able to do it anyway, you won’t take any action (or you’ll make a half-hearted effort), and as a result will never get to where you wanted to be.

In today’s post, we’d like to remind you of the power of positive thinking and belief in yourself, and that the way you see your failures and setbacks ultimately determines your success. The way you think can help you move towards your goals faster than you thought was possible.

Read moreGet Your Mind Right to Make Better Progress

Never Stop Learning: 7 of My Favorite Books to Unlock Your Potential

I strongly believe that in order to truly unlock your potential as a person you need to constantly be learning new things.

There are many ways to do this, including reading lots and lots of books, taking classes, watching documentaries or even TV shows, listening to podcasts… you get the idea.

I’ve been a huge reader ever since I was a kid, and I easily consume 5+ books a month, many of them focused on personal growth, business, psychology, and of course some health and fitness-related ones.

So for something different, I thought it might be fun to give you guys an insight on some of the books that have made the biggest difference in my life in the past 5-10 years. Not all of them will be applicable to you and your personal goals, but there might be one or two that end up peaking your interest and ultimately have a big impact on you, just like they did for me.

Here are 7 of my favorite books to unlock your potential in life, business, and health:

Read moreNever Stop Learning: 7 of My Favorite Books to Unlock Your Potential