When I first got consumed with the fitness world, I was constantly researching and looking at the Pro Fitness Competitors wishing for their bodies. I would hang pictures up in my room of the bikini girls and look in the mirror each morning hoping that I was a step closer to looking like them. Fast-forward to last winter when I took interest in the sport of Powerlifting. I was again researching other competitors wanting to lift as heavy as they did. “That girl weighs so much less than me and can lift SO much more than I can…what gives?!” This is when I realized what I was doing- I was comparing myself to the best of the best. I had barely been lifting heavy for a few weeks yet I was getting discouraged when I wasn’t putting up huge numbers. I took a step back and said to myself, “Alessandra, you are a newbie. Let yourself be a newbie.” That moment is when I started to build confidence in myself and as a result of that combined with daily dedication, my lifts started to increase.
My point? Never compare yourself to others, especially when it comes to training. I had a client who refused to step foot in a gym. She signed up for one of our Online Coaching programs and had me alter the program so she could perform it at home because she said that she would never step foot inside the gym because she felt lost, didn’t know what she was doing, and thought the gym was for the hardcore lifters. While I respect my clients wishes, I gave her that program and after a few weeks she was progressing, but wanted more. I explained to her that she needed heavier weights and needed to step out of her comfort zone and just TRY going to the gym. She agreed and now 3 programs later she lifts heavy at her gym 4X per week. She could have missed out on becoming the best version of herself simply because she thought she was going to be judged and compared. Who cares if the person next to you is lifting 5X the amount of weight you have in your hands? The important thing is you are there, you are increasing your confidence, and you are progressing.
I think it is great to have role models and I think everyone should have someone to look up to. That said person should inspire you, motivate you and drive you to work hard. It is great to get ideas and inspiration from a role model, however it is also important to know that they require different training and different nutrition than you do. What works for one person, is not always going to work for another. In fact, most of the time it won’t. Copying your role model’s training regimen or nutritional intake is not going to make you just like them. The Principle of Individuality states that everyone is different and responds differently to training. This is largely due to genetics as well as your fitness level. Would someone who has never performed a squat before progress well on a high volume squat training? Negative. Your training and diet should be specific to you.
With social media literally taking over the world, it can be easy to find yourself comparing YOU to someone else. Someone else’s abs, legs, hair, clothing. Being true to yourself is getting harder and harder to do, but once you find what you’re passionate about, what works for you and what makes you the happiest- stick to it and OWN it!