By Nate Whitten, March 12, 2015.

Have you read all the articles that tell you what exercises you shouldn’t be doing? How about the articles on finding the secret to success? If you have, and you’re like me, you get frustrated and confused by the mixed information from professionals.

While I was looking online for the exercises that are a waste of time, to report to you, I found that if I put all the expert opinions together, there would be absolutely no exercises left to do, anything I did would be wrong and I would most likely end up hurting myself.

While it is true that there are exercises that do not provide the results we hope for, it doesn’t mean they are worthless. Any movement will result in either calories burned or some affect on the muscle. But, if these exercises do not help us gain the results we are looking for, it’s time to find a routine and plan that works.

Whether you’re seeking success in a relationship, at work or in the gym, there is no “one-size-fits-all” program, but finding one that works for you is easy with these three steps:


If you desire hulk-like muscles, you’re going to have to lift heavy weights and essentially destroy the muscles you have in order to rebuild and strengthen. If you want flexibility, you’ll want to stretch and lengthen the muscle. If you want to be lean and develop a swimmers build, you’ll focus on a nutritional plan that fosters less fat intake.

Commitment to your goal will require specific research and focused training. But if you don’t know exactly what you want to see when you’re looking in the mirror, or how you want to describe your body type on your Grindr profile, you’ll be less likely to reach that goal.

Just like in your personal life, hoping to make more money at your job without a specific dollar amount or level of position, you’ll continue to do the same thing that is getting you nowhere. Set your goal by defining what you want, why you want it and what it will look like when you reach that goal.


Just saying you want a fit body won’t cut it as a personalized plan. Your plan needs to be adapted to your goal, your timeline, your ability and your body. For example, you can lose 50 pounds in one month – it will probably be unhealthy and uncomfortable to do, but it can be done. You may be opposed to HCG as a way to lose weight. You may not be able to burn off 4,000 calories a day. Consult a professional who can work with your lifestyle to help you realistically create the most effective plan.

When it comes to a plan for improving relationships, examine your own situation rather than comparing yourself to others. The successful techniques that keep one couple happily in the U-Haul stage may not work for you or your significant other. To maintain that glorious honeymoon period that keeps you from ending up in gay divorce court, you have to relate in a personal way to your personal relationship. If you’re having a hard time doing that, just like with your fitness, consult a professional (intentional segue to step number three).


When you’re lifting a 5-pound dumbbell for the 150th time and the big guy next to you is lifting 50 pounds once or twice, you may find yourself feeling less than adequate. Remember, your goal and his goal are different, and its no one else’s business how much you’re lifting, how many you’ve lifted or why you’re implementing the routine you are.

Release the need to compare your actions to the actions of others when working out (in all aspects of life, actually). Since you know your goal and now you have created your personalized plan, you can focus on your own implementation and quit wondering about what others are doing. If you think you need to do the same thing as everyone else, you will fail.

Your success – in your relationship, at work or in the gym – is too personal and too important to subject to the opinions and thoughts of others. Whether you’re after relationship bliss, a promotion at work or that rock-hard washboard stomach, what works for one won’t necessarily work for another. Keep this in mind when pouring over expert advice.

Photo courtesy of The Dinah

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Photo courtesy of Michael Feinstein.

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