The other day, I was taking an Uber to my girl’s place.
And trying to maneuver the car through Quito’s heavy evening traffic, the driver started chatting me up.
Now, when I’m in a cab or Uber I just want to be left alone. I prefer the quiet drivers who say hello and goodbye and leave it at that.
But I’m also not a prick, so if you initiate a conversation I will keep the ball rolling. And I’ll tell you this:
I’ve learned a lot driving around Quito in the past couple of years. Valuable life lessons. More of the “how-not-to-do-it” kind, but regardless, I always walked away with something new.
We got to talking about the foundation I work with, and how prevalent alcoholism and drug addiction are in my neighborhood.
And then he hit me with his story of smoking over 2 packs of cigarettes a day for 30+ years.
How he burdened the people in his life with his addiction and how he tried to quit over and over again. How he would’ve smoked during his meals and while showering if it were somehow possible.
And how one day, after 35 years of smoking, he quit.
“What was different this time around?”, I asked.
The company he worked for ordered a general health check-up for its employees one day. And he was told his blood pressure was high, and given the circumstances, he could suffer a heart attack at any moment.
“That was it.”
That was all the motivation he needed to stop cold turkey. He never smoked a cigarette since.
He finally had a reason to quit. A reason to turn his life around.
And we all need a reason.
We need a reason and we need a plan.
He then proceeded to tell me about his past as a college athlete and how his routine back then was so different from what he was doing during his years of addiction.
“I hate anything that involves routine.”, he told me.
“I love anything that involves routine.”, I fired back.
I love a good routine. Because I’ve learned for myself that routine is the only thing that can get you to where you want to go.
It can give you the body you want, the lifestyle you want, the financial freedom you want. Everything is dependent on your daily habits and routine.
The good news is we instinctually crave routines. In the case of my Uber, his routine was to wake up in the morning and reach for a cigarette right away and keep that going until he hit the sheets again at night.
So no, he didn’t hate routine, he just subconsciously chose one that would slowly destroy him, one day at a time.
We all follow routines. We all make choices. Consciously or subconsciously.
I consciously chose a routine that made me into the man I always wanted to be. And while training is an integral part of this routine it doesn’t run my day.
In fact, all it takes for me to look and feel like a million bucks every day is.. 10 minutes.
Do you have 10 minutes a day to change your life for the better?
Get Ripped with 10-Minute Workouts
“Build muscle and get ripped training for a measly 10 minutes a day?”
I’ll be the first to tell you, I’ve been way too rigid, too short-sighted, and too impatient with my training for as far back as I can remember.
Sure.. it led to some incredible results and perhaps was necessary for me to truly learn and understand what works and what doesn’t.
Today my training is simpler than it’s ever been. I don’t chase perfection. I don’t chase a new record performance every week.
I train because I love it. I train because it has given me direction and purpose. I train because it has made me who I am today.
I train to train.
I train to move, to be healthy, to be strong, to be capable, to be reliable, to be a fortress of a man.
And training is not a separate event from my life anymore. I don’t just cut out half an hour a few times a week to work on my biceps.
I’ve made training an integral part of my daily existence. And this my friends is where the fun starts.
Pumping push-ups as I’m sipping my morning coffee and reading my bible. Hitting some squats between client calls. Throwing in some pull-ups whenever I have a minute.
I work up to 200-300 reps some days before I even get to my actual workout in the late afternoon.
It’s part of who I am. Part of everything I do. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Now, some days I might not have the time (or the desire) to do more than a 10-minute rapid-fire session. So I’ll pick an exercise or two, bang out as many clean reps as I can in 10 minutes and call it a day.
I don’t, however, habitually run myself into the ground anymore. I move to move. I train to train.
Here’s how to use this strategy to get built like Hercules:
Don’t do sets to failure all day. Move your body to move your body. Slow and controlled reps. Disregard the numbers. Let your body dictate the intensity, the number of sets and reps you do.
Practice the exercises as opposed to using them to get a certain outcome. Ride the wave, without trying to get to the destination yesterday. Train to train.
And that can look different day to day.
Do one or multiple 10-minute sessions a day. Alternatively, spread out a few sets throughout your day and add a full-blown session at the end of the day. That’s what I do personally, and this style of training has served me very well.
My work capacity and conditioning are on a different level without me having to kill myself in the gym every day.
I rarely get sore anymore. I am always ready for action. And I know all I have to invest is 10 minutes.
Some days I’ll do push-ups till I collapse and other days I’ll just do 3-5 sets total. But I make it a point to do something every day.
Not feeling the gym today? Low energy with no desire to train?
Give me 10 minutes. That’s it. 10 minutes of basic squats and push-ups. Anybody can bang out a 10-minute session. I guarantee you’ll feel like a new man after those 10 minutes are up.
How about another 10 minutes?
Now, don’t get it twisted. I’m not telling you to be a complete minimalist and always aim for minimum effort.
Not at all.
I want you to see the freedom that training offers. The uniqueness of your approach to training compared to mine.
You don’t have to do the same routine week in and week out to get results. And you don’t have to do the same thing I do. There’s more than one path leading up the mountain.
Only one thing I’ll insist on, without exception.
Be honest about the work you’re putting in. Be honest with YOURSELF about the effort you are pouring into your sets and your meals.
Don’t fool yourself.
Be honest about the sacrifice you’re willing to make to get to your ultimate goal.
That’s it. That’s all I ask.
Let’s get to work.