Categories: Fitness & Exercise

Workout challenges: What Stands in the Way of Obtaining a Great Body

Workout challenges – Obtaining a Great Body

We take a look at some of the workout challenges that people face when looking to achieve a great physique.

Eating a well-balanced diet and training regularly is not only essential to maintaining an optimal level of health, but also to building and developing a strong, lean, and well-rounded physique (which is arguably the most common training goal we see in the gym on a day to day basis).

And while most of us have the knowledge required to achieve these goals, we frequently come across certain barriers that make it extremely difficult to attain them.


How do you manage these barriers?

While these barriers may differ slightly on the individual’s personal scenario, there are common trends for workout challenges that we frequently see across the board – irrespective of training status, training preference, and lifestyle.

In the following article we are going to touch on each of these barriers and make clear recommendations on how to manage them, allowing you to conquer your training related goals as easily and as effectively as possible!


Dietary Challenges

The vast majority of regular gym goers (72%) find themselves following a strict diet plan as means to try and making lasting changes to their body.

Within that, a massive 50% of all gym goers find that maintaining a healthy and well-rounded diet the most difficult aspect of making lasting changes to their body.

This becomes quite interesting if we break it down even further, as it actually gives us a little insight into why most people may have difficulty adhering to their diet, and as such, have difficulty seeing training related improvements in themselves.

Firstly, 70% of those who train on a regular basis actually create their own diet plan, with 64% suggesting that the diet they try to follow fits under the category of a clean eating diet plan.

This actually provides us with a huge amount of information telling us that those who most likely have the hardest time adhering to their diet are those who

1) make their own diet plan

2) they try to eat clean all the time.


Can you actually adhere to it?

Now while this approach may have merit if it can actually be adhered to, it does come with some serious downfalls.

You see, we as people have the perception that when dieting we should be eating very strictly, essentially avoiding all the foods that we like (or that may be perceived as ‘bad’ for us).

This is further compounded by the ‘clean eating’ trend, which effectively requires us to abstain from eating anything sweet or high in fat.

This approach requires an extremely large amount of willpower, and as such, can become extremely draining from a mental perspective.

As a result, it becomes very easy to fall into dietary ‘lapses’, where we find our willpower breaking and we binge on too much “un-clean’ food as a result.

This further results in more negative feelings, and the cycle repeats itself – in which we see little or no improvement in ourselves.

So what can we do about it?


Adhere to the 80% rule

The 80% rule effectively requires us to eat clean and healthy 80% of the time, leaving a little bit of wiggle room in our dietary plans.

This means that the entire dietary process is not as draining on our will power, leaving us in a better mental state each and every day.

This improves not only the quality of our training, but also completely eliminates the risk of us having large binges on unhealthy foods every couple of days.

This is best implemented by picking one meal every 2-3 days that doesn’t have to be clean.

I typically do this with dinner, so I can head out for tacos once or twice a week with friends, and not have to worry about what I am eating (or how much for that matter).


The Challenges of Daily Life

Combined with the difficulty of adhering to a diet, almost 40% of trainees find balancing their daily life one of the largest workout challenges to exercising regularly. And we get it.

Each and every one of us have to try and manage our extremely busy lives on a day to day basis, and often working out is the thing that gets squeezed out.

While I would be the first to admit that this could unquestionably happen to anyone, there is another contributing factor here.

Within this, a further 30% of people find it extremely difficult to adhere to their muscle gain workout.


Finding the time

These two pieces of information tell us that the vast majority of people who find it difficult to find the time to train, also follow a more traditional body part training split.

Now, while body part training splits do have high capacity to build muscle mass, they do require us to get to the gym anywhere from 5 to 7 days per week, for at least an hour at a time.

If we take a second to think about this, then it becomes quite apparent that this is not an efficient method of training – particularly if someone has a busy schedule.

So what can we do about it?


Use a more efficient training split

It is incredibly important that we tailor make our training program to fit our busy schedule – and NOT try and fit our schedule around our hefty training plan.

This may mean that we can only train 2-3 times per week (which is completely fine).

If this is the case then it is time to opt for a full body training split, in which we prioritise large compound movements and hit every key muscle group in the body every single session.

This makes for a much more efficient means of training, in which we can still see great results even if we only make it to the gym two times per week.

The same approach can be applied if we can make it four times per week, but for only 45 minutes per session.

In this scenario we could try an upper/lower training split, in which we train upper body two times per week and lower body two times per week.



There is no doubt that we will face some workout challenges when trying to train regularly and improve ourselves physically.

For most, these challenges will revolve around diet and time management.

By using the tips outlined in this article, we can effectively limit the impact that these challenges have on our training ability, allowing us to see vast improvement in our both our body, and in our mental clarity – further improving our training related results tenfold.

And always remember to stretch & warm down after any exercise.


Struggling to get yourself motivated for Exercise? If so, don’t miss our article on ‘7 ways to improve your fitness motivation’


Let Us Know

What workout challenges do you find yourself facing?  And how you do overcome them?

We’d love for you to let us know and share your advise four our other readers in the comments below…

Demmy James

Demmy James is a fitness buff, strength and conditioning specialist and content contributor with Muscle & Strength. He is constantly looking to inspire and motivate others to achieve their own health and fitness goals through his writings. Follow him on Twitter for more tips and guides.

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