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Over-40 Bodybuilder’s Golden Rule


Your age and training experience affect your goals. For example, if you’re 41 and have trained consistently since your teens, your goals and training routines will be different from those of a 41-year-old beginner. If you’re 61, with many years of training experience, you’ll probably have different concerns, goals and routines from those of a 41-year-old who also has many years of training experience. And if you’re 81, you’ll probably have concerns, goals and training routines different from those of a 61-year-old.

But whether you’re 41, 61, 81 or any other age, the golden rule will apply to you. Act on it, and ensure your relentless progress toward your goals.

Each day is an opportunity to take a small step toward your goals. Each day is also an opportunity to fail to take a small step toward your goals. And each day is an opportunity to take a small or perhaps large step away from your goals.

You can’t retake a day to make a better job of it. Each day is a one-off event. If you don’t get it right, you’ll have blown an opportunity for progress.

Your life is a sequence of todays. You get a fresh one every 24 hours, a fresh opportunity to get everything right. For determining whether you make progress toward your goals, there’s nothing more important than what you do today.

You can’t change anything from the past, and you don’t know what the future is going to bring. The best you can do is to get today right.

If today is a training day, you have a one-off opportunity to have a perfect workout. Perform only exercises that are suited to you. Use correct technique and a single-minded focus. Train hard while striving to add a little weight to each exercise every week or two. Ignore any temptation to do anything rash in your workout.

Take each workout one at a time. Make it perfect. If you can make one workout perfect, you can make the next one perfect and the next one and then the next one.

If today is a cardio day, you have an opportunity to have a perfect heart workout. Perform a cardio activity that’s safe, preferably one that you enjoy—or at least don’t dislike. Use correct technique and a single-minded focus. Train hard enough to produce a sufficient heart-training effect. Ignore any temptation to do anything rash in your workout.

Take each cardio workout one at a time. Make it perfect. If you can make one cardio workout perfect, you can make the next one perfect and the next one and then the next one.

If today is a stretching day, you have a one-off opportunity to have a perfect flexibility workout. Perform only stretches that are safe and that you enjoy. Use correct technique and a single-minded focus. Ignore any temptation to do anything rash while stretching.

Take each stretching session one at a time. Make it perfect. If you can make one stretching workout perfect, you can make the next one perfect and the next one and then the next one.

Today you have a one-off opportunity to have a perfect day of nourishment. Eat only the number of calories that are appropriate for you at present. Eat only healthful food in quantities appropriate for you, and eat only food that you can digest comfortably. Eat for nourishment, not entertainment, but choose a variety of healthful foods that you enjoy.

Take each meal and day’s nutrition one at a time. Make each meal perfect. If you can make one day’s nutrition perfect, you can make the next one perfect and the next one and then the next one.

You have another one-off opportunity to have a perfect night of rest. Go to bed early enough to obtain enough sleep before you have to get up—give sleep more priority than the TV, for example. Sleep until you wake naturally.

Take each day’s sleep one at a time. Make each bout of sleep perfect. If you can make one day’s sleep perfect, you can make the next one perfect and the next one and then the next one.

As far as your training, nutrition and sleep go, keep your mind totally on one day at a time. That’s the golden rule.
Give 100 percent to getting today right. Tomorrow you’ll have a new today. Give 100 percent to getting that today right. Then the following day you’ll have another new today. And so on.

Do that relentlessly, and you’ll eventually reach your goals, provided you know how to train and eat properly and what actions to take to improve the quality of your sleep—and provided you have realistic goals.

Building a large brick wall is done one brick at a time; and building your physique is done one day at a time, bit by bit.

Inch by inch, life’s a cinch. One day at a time, bodybuilding is too.

—Stuart McRobert
www.Hardgainer.com

Editor’s note: Stuart McRobert’s first byline in IRON MAN appeared in 1981. He’s the author of the new 638-page opus on bodybuilding, Build Muscle, Lose Fat, Look Great, available from Home Gym Warehouse, (800) 447-0008, or www.Home-Gym
.com.

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