There's a lot of valuable time and resources being wasted, guys! If it makes you feel any better, I'm often guilty of wasting them just as much as anyone is.

How many times has someone enthusiastically shared a training strategy that, in your judgment at the time, made absolutely no sense? But, how many times has a technique you once thought was ridiculous provided phenomenal muscle gains when you tried it later? Has this ever happened to you? It's happened to me.

There have been many times when I've been exposed to a of piece bodybuilding information, casually evaluated it, then quickly discarded it. Then, as much as several years later, I'd try that strategy and achieve outstanding results. If only I had been smart enough to take those suggestions to heart and try them sooner. Just think how much more musclae I would have earned by now. Just think how much more momentum I could have created. There is nothing I can do to make up for that lost time. The time you waste is a resource that you can never get back.

I'm sure you can relate to my feelings. This challenge is very common among most of us who train in the gym. Why do our brains seem to immediately find fault with many of the new strategies introduced to us, whether they come from a fellow bodybuilder or an article in a magazine? We have many opportunities to strengthen our bodybuilding efforts from experienced champions with track records of success. There are also knowledgeable experts who generously make their philosophies available in bodybuilding magazine articles, books, and websites. How can we make use of this helpful information? And even better, how can we use it much sooner?

I, myself, occasionally fail to take advantage of state-of-the-art bodybuilding strategies that will help me reach my own goals. I was in Gold's Gym in Venice, California, about three months before I was to defend my Team Universe overall victory. IFBB professional bodybuilder Paul Dillet said to me, "Skip, you could be much bigger and just as lean as you were last year." He then offered me a rather simple, but extremely valuable, piece of nutritional advice. Tito Raymond, who was on the treadmill next to Dillet at the time, nodded in agreement.

How receptive do you think I was to his suggestion? I was just coming off a victory in which I achieved a level of conditioning that surely set a new standard for drug-free heavyweights. I may have been a good 16 or 17 pounds lighter than I had ever been-but I was unbelievably shredded nonetheless.

Long story made short, I didn't use his advice and came in second place that year. I was much heavier, but not quite as ripped. Since that conversation, Dillet won the Night of Champions. Raymond won both the middleweight class at the Team Universe and the professional division of the Musclemania. They are the ones who succeeded-while I had to settle for a disappointing second-place finish in my class.

The most unfortunate part of the story (for me, at least) is that, although I was unaware of exactly what I was doing, I had used this very same nutritional strategy for months leading up to my Team Universe victory the year before! I just didn't realize or appreciate how effectively my body had utilized this plan. Now that I am armed with the knowledge, experience, and pain of a missed opportunity, I've implemented this diet again this year and am experiencing amazing results.

Damn! Just think of the position I could be in right now if my mind had been open to Paul's suggestion back then. I could possibly have been the very first back-to­back Team Universe champion. I probably worked just as hard as the year I won, but the difference between a repeat victory and settling for second place just might have been that single nutritional strategy.

Wasting valuable information offered to us is not due to a lack of desire. If you're reading this book right now, I can safely assume that you are driven, committed, and constantly searching for ways to become more efficient in your training, nutrition, supplementation, and motivation habits. I know that I am. If we are truly committed to constantly taking our physiques to the next level, why don't we embrace these exceptional pieces of advice?

Wasting valuable information offered to us is not due to a lack of desire.

As I strive to become one of the very best bodybuilding coaches who helps you achieve your physique-enhancing goals, I often ask myself "How can I respect the natural learning progression of bodybuilders and still influence them to use my effective, proven, and experience-based strategies?" I've asked myself this question literally hundreds of times. Before I could help others, however, I first needed to understand why I myself would sometimes fail to take advantage of the great bodybuilding information suggested to me.

I'll share with you why I believe many bodybuilders fall into this disempowering mindset. Most importantly, I'll outline five specific actions for keeping an open mind to new bodybuilding information and accelerating your progress. Then, I will tell what you stand to lose by not opening your mind to new information and the benefits you can enjoy.

There are a few reasons I believe we are hesitant to accept helpful information. In the natural progression of the learning process, we focus on our differences, and we don't have faith in the source of information.

The Natural Progression of the Learning Process

No matter how hard we try, we can only learn so much information so fast. There is a pattern of acquiring bodybuilding information that's common among many of us. In other words, there's a natural progression of learning that happens in bodybuilding or any other endeavor requiring a certain level of experience. This natural progression needs to happen before any person can be considered good at what he or she does.

This natural progression of the learning process reminds me of a movie that was released in the late 80s titled Colors. Colors starred actors Sean Penn and Robert Duvall as a police officer duo. Penn played the role of a cocky rookie cop who thought he knew everything about the tough, crime-ridden streets. Duvall, who was the wise and veteran partner, took it upon himself to show Penn the best ways to deal with the challenges of law enforcement. No matter how hard he tried, Duvall couldn't convince Penn his experience-based advice was the best for everyone concerned. Penn's lack of experience and misguided sense of certainty caused him to make many tactical rookie mistakes.

By the time the movie ended, Penn, now much more sophisticated in his approach, had the very same difficult task of giving advice to his own overconfident rookie partner. Ironically, Penn used the same stories, examples, and analogies that Duvall had shared with him years before. (For those of you who have been training a few years and occasionally offer your advice to less­experienced bodybuilders, how familiar does that story sound?)

This scenario is quite understandable. I often share what I feel is solid, hard­earned, valuable bodybuilding advice-only to have it fall upon deaf ears. It's like giving a sixteen-year-old, first-time driver a brand-new Mercedes Benz as his very first car. How can he possibly appreciate the value of such a fine automobile when he doesn't really have anything to compare it to? He has no point of reference. Sure, people can tell him how lucky he is to have such a great car but, until he spends some time behind the wheel of an old, beat-up Chevy, he'll never truly appreciate the value of the Mercedes.

We Focus on Our Differences

Oftentimes when we are presented with new bodybuilding information intended to make our efforts easier, we instantly look for reasons why our own particular circumstances are unique and require unique strategies. In other words, we tend to focus on our differences.

Sure, most of us think we are unlike most other people training in the gym. We oftentimes believe that our individual circumstances, patterns of thinking, and challenges we face as we try to build our physiques are unique. Many times we choose to believe that our own difficulties are tougher to overcome than those of the other guy.

We actively seek out and zero in on what we think makes us uncommon. We make a point of noticing what makes us unlike other bodybuilders by identifying variables such as training styles, routines, diets, body types, genetics, metabolic rates, number of years of training, age, gender, and whether we train drug free or chemically assisted, just to name a few.

The bottom line is that we are all after the same things: to build muscle, lose body fat, or a combination of building muscle and losing body fat. We also want to do so in the most efficient ways and in the shortest time. It's that simple.

Focusing on our differences is counterproductive! Adopting the belief that our situation is unique and especially difficult to overcome can also be detrimental. Why? Because, despite the particulars, focusing too much on our differences will unnecessarily complicate the bodybuilding process.

All too often, when a typical bodybuilder comes across a stumbling block, he'll begin saying things like "Every strategy works differently for everybody", "People do not respond the same way to different routines or diets", and "What works for you may not work for me!" They can become jaded, their thoughts cynical and pessimistic. They start seeing potentially powerful sources of information as farces.

Although this mentality may relieve some frustration, confusion, burdens, and anxiety in the short run, it may jeopardize a bodybuilder's progress in the long run. Why? Because this type of rationale keeps you in your comfort zone. It takes the pressure off yourself and you won't assess your own thoughts and actions- and how they may contribute or hinder your results.

The fact of the matter is we are more alike than we are different! Although our results may vary due to our particular circumstances, the strategies needed to effectively build muscle and lose body fat are basically the same for all of us. Adopting this belief will simplify the bodybuilding process and force you to take

100 percent responsibility for your mental approach and all of your physical actions.

When I think about it now, when Paul made his diet suggestion, I wasn't getting lean at a rate that was proportionate to the amount of effort I was investing. I wanted to stay in my comfort zone. I looked for every reason in the world why that strategy wasn't as earthshaking as Dillet believed. "He's a pro. He's weighs much more than I do. He has much more muscle mass. He has more experience. He trains under different conditions." Believe me, my mind thought of all the reasons why my circumstances were unlike his!

We Don't Have Faith in the Source Of Information

We all connect in different ways to the people who present us with bodybuilding information. The reasons that we relate to a particular bodybuilder or magazine writer are not always based on concrete scientific logic. We are influenced primarily on an emotional level.

"I don't know what you're talking about, aLa Cour! There's so much conflicting information out there. I can shoot holes in most of these so-called experts' theories. My strategies are based on pure science!"

The fact of the matter is, someone can always shoot holes-and often do-in anyone else's bodybuilding theories. Whether it's because you are drawn to a certain bodybuilders or writers by personality or style, their track record of success, or a friend's endorsement, you are primarily first persuaded emotionally to try their bodybuilding advice. Then, it's your own attitude and hard work that takes over from there and dictates your outcome.

Focusing on our differences is counterproductive! Adopting the belief that our situation is unique and especially difficult to overcome can also be detrimental. Why? Because, despite the particulars, focusing too much on our differences will unnecessarily complicate the bodybuilding process.

It does not matter how successful the fellow bodybuilder, magazine, or writer offering the information is. If you are not moved emotionally by the person or writer offering the information, there will be little chance that you'll adopt their point of view. If you don't trust the messenger, you won't trust the message.

Who cares if a champion has been pushing himself to an incredibly high standard for ten or fifteen years? We might consider ourselves intermediate, but when the advice presented is above our current level of understanding, we're often overwhelmed. If we have not been moved emotionally, we'll shoot holes in those theories and hold onto our current beliefs.

Although Paul Dillet was certain about the advice he was giving me, he couldn't sway me enough for me to make immediate changes. After thinking about what he said for months, I eventually implemented his recommendations. At that earlier time, I wasn't inspired, persuaded, or influenced sufficiently to do so.

Technorati : ,