Article written by Addison Turney
I have been on deployment for the last 7 months now, aboard a ship, in the Navy, and I’ll tell you something that’ll hurt your progress even more than 15 foot waves making a 135 pound bench feel more like 315. That progress killer is called the funk, and it’ll get you to slack on work outs, to keep weight off your bar, and to even stop going to the gym at all. But don’t worry there are some really easy ways to break out of that funk.
First thing first is I’d recommend having a trainer, a gym partner, or even someone you can just talk to about that sweet pump last night and how deep your squats are getting. I’ve personally got all three, Brandon Morrison is my trainer so I get all my work outs from him, taking out the entire guess work of “do I do back and bi’s or chest and tri’s?” Then I have great Navy and Marine buddies who will jump into my workouts now and then and push me to go a bit harder. I have a wicked competitive personality so if my buddy does an extra rep I’ve got to do two. Be cautious though, there are some gym buddies who can quickly turn a work out into latte’s and book club in between sets.
Secondly, do something new. It could be as simple as pulling sumo instead of conventional, or it could be changing your workout time from 5pm to 1am. Recently I’ve loved messing with my squat whether it is exhausting sets of 12+ or crushing sets with multiple pauses, the variation has made me appreciate the lift and love it more because (duh) I’m getting stronger. You don’t have to re-invent the wheel with Bulgarian snatch grip paused dead lifts on a bosu ball either, look for slight modifications so that you’re training for your next goals instead of something out of Cirque’ du Soleil.
But what if you’ve got the most badass trainer and plenty of nuances in your routine as is, but you still feel like you are the bored/lazy guy in an energy drink commercial? There is a reason the gods invented caffeine; It was to get your butt up and to the gym, so drink some strong dark coffee, or take a pre-workout and get moving. I won’t tell you which pre-workout product I use, they aren’t paying me to endorse their product, but I basically choose something that doesn’t give me diarrhea and doesn’t taste like it either. This little caffeinated kick in the arse will hopefully get you up and moving, and if anything remember the only cure for your pre-workout “beta-tingles” is to work out.
Lastly prioritize your training and realize it is ok to sacrifice some sleep once in a while. My most recent funk came about because I was switched from night shift to day shift at work. The only thing I wanted for several days is to catch up on sleep, or at least rest, sure my body was sore, and I haven’t gotten to watch my new favorite show in a couple days, plus I want to finish that book I started, and maybe I should whiten my teeth, I wonder what’s new on YouTube – Stop! Focus! I was looking forward to getting a full 8+ hours of sleep, but I dragged myself to the gym. After all that I maybe lost an hour or so of sleep, but that lost sleep is worth it because it got me out of that funk. I could have easily continued to say “tomorrow” or “I need to catch up on some sleep” but a little sacrifice goes a long way.