5 ways to know you’re not failing (even when you think you are)

Courtney Ley

Failing – it’s a scary word.

Lately I’ve increasingly noticed people telling me why they’re failing. I thought I’d pick my favourite 5 and let you know how I feel about them.

-     1.   I’m failing because – I’m the most unfit person in the class.

We have all been the most unfit person in the gym. When I first started, I could barely squat with no weight at all. I struggled to get through a 30min cardio class. To be honest, I still struggle to get through the classes. Now that’s not because the classes are harder – it’s because I get better at them, and in turn I push myself harder. You will always feel like the most unfit, because you will always find them hard – that is the point!!

So, get over the idea that your workouts will get easier. If they are easy – they are not working!!!!

-        2.  I’m failing because – I had 3 cheat meals last week.

I hear this a lot – “I had more cheat meals then I should’ve had this week”. Our minds always want to focus on the negative. Don’t ask me why, I wonder all the time. It just does!

So, while our minds have been focusing on the negative, we have conveniently forgotten about all the great meals we had over the week. What about them? Do they not count?
You are not failing if you have one or two more cheat meals then you had allocated for yourself. Shit happens. That is not enough to make all the weight pile back on. Focus on what you did right and learn from this for next time. And remember the most important thing of all – We NEVER aim for perfection!!

-       3.   I’m failing because – I can’t get through a hard weights session.

Weight training is hard. It’s very taxing on the body and takes so much energy. Sometimes you may pull up sore or find yourself fatigue quicker than normal during a session. OMG what a disaster!!! NO, not quite!

This happens a lot. There are so many factors that could contribute to this that, it’s completely unfair to stress yourself out over it.
Did you sleep well the day before? Did you do any physical exercise you don’t usually do? Did you eat enough food? Are you just fatigued from a hard workout?
The list could go on and on.

These workouts happen, sometimes you just need to listen to your body and stop. It does not mean you are failing.

If this happens at your next workout and the one after, then you see a pattern and you may need to adjust your workouts. Maybe the days or the exercises themselves need to be adjusted. But this still doesn’t mean you’re failing!

-        4.  I’m failing because – my old (insert injury here) is playing up and I’m not going to be able to do anything.

I have a secret for you…Almost every person I know has some kind of injury. Whether it’s something they know about and pops back up every so often, or it’s one that has appeared. This often happens as when we are not active for years, then start injuries or niggles can appear.

This is no reason to stress. There is always something you can do. In all my time as a trainer I’ve only ever been told by a physio once that a client could not do anything, and that was only because she needed surgery to fix as pre-existing condition.

That’s it…just one!
Every other client I’ve ever had, has been able to do something. Yes, it may be a little trial and error to work that out. Yes, it may be a pain in the butt until you get it right. But…you can still do something.
You have a back problem and can’t get on the ground to do push ups? Fine…do them on the wall.

You have a shoulder injury and can’t hold a barbell? Fine…use dumbbells.

We always get clarification from a health professional, e.g. Physio, podiatrist etc. before carrying on, but as I said 99 times out of 100 there is always some else you can do. And we all know that if we are moving out bodies and eating good food – we are on the right path.

-    5.  I’m failing because – I’ve stopped changing.

This one is so common it’s not even funny! I use to say this all the time.
The big question here is – who said you’ve stopped changing?
You are the last person who should be trusted to make a fair judgement on your own progress. Remember our brains favour the negative, so of course we think we’ve stopped changing.

Think about how often we notice others in the gym, but not ourselves. So, the chances are that you are completely wrong!!
I love the most when I get the comment “I’ve stopped changing, but my clothes fit differently.”
Ummm do you hear yourself speak?
You are not failing if you think you have stopped changing, because the chances are very high you are wrong!

Now, on the other side – what if you have taken photos and you really have stopped changing?

You’re still not failing!!! All this means is you need to look at your habits. Have you started to eat anything different? Have you changed your exercise program?
It is possible something is just not clicking and you need to tighten up on some bad habits which have crept back in.

Remember it’s always going to be a work in progress to get to where you want to be, and then stay there.

The biggest lesson I wanted to get across in this article is that failing is none of these things.

These are all just negative thoughts we let ourselves or small bumps in the road to be adjusted and then move one.

These are NOT failing!!

What is failing you may ask…

Failing is quitting.

Failing is giving up. Throwing in the white towel and saying, “it’s all just too hard”.

We all allow our negative thoughts to creep into our minds from time to time…even me. But never think you are failing!!


Inspiration Nutrition Weight Loss Exercise Fire ICE

Back To Blog