I think if there’s one thing that bothers me at the gym, it’s people coming in and trying to get big the two weeks before spring break. I absolutely respect that they want to get into shape, but I am sorry that I have to say that they can not possibly gain 10 pounds of muscle in 14 days. It just doesn’t work like that. I think one of the biggest misconceptions about lifting is that results can happen in as little as a couple days. I don’t know where this started, quite probably on an infomercial; but it is completely false.
I don’t mean to discourage anyone. There are probably those who can drop a few pounds in just two weeks in a healthy way through the proper diet and exercise, but I promise you that 10 days of curls before they fly south to the beach will not do much more than make them sore and weak. They can save themselves the aches and disappointment if they just start earlier next year and make their expectations more realistic.
When I came into college I would step on the scale and be disappointed that I weighed only 160lbs. I have been training and dieting over the past year and a half and I have only put on 10-15 pounds of weight. My diet is not perfect, and I am still perfecting it, but I promise you that it is better than the average diet. I share this only to show that I speak from some experience, I know that results do not just happen overnight.
So, how do you get in shape for next years spring break? The simple answer is; mark your calendar now. You have an entire year ahead of you to get into the shape you want. Even if you skip a week occasionally, the end result of a year of mediocre training still trumps two weeks of busting yourself. However, it’s tough because if someone is truly only trying to get in shape for spring break, they may not have the desire or willpower to be in the gym every week until then. In this case, maybe it would be best to pick an event half way through the year, or better yet, a couple. Even choosing something as small as a 5K can help keep priorities straight.
Don’t be intimidated or discouraged about getting in shape for spring break. You can get yourself ready, but just keep in mind that it won’t happen over night. Start early, train hard, seek knowledge throughout the process, and reap the benefits.
is majoring in Neuroscience at the University of Minnesota
and along with his weightlifting workouts, he competes in marathons and ultra-marathons (50 mile races) and is looking to earn a Cross-Fit title or to be recognized with The World’s Fittest Man title which is reserved for an ultra endurance power athlete.