Written by LeeAnn Hriniak


July 14, 2021


Intention is an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result. Now, how does this apply to my fitness journey and how can it affect results?

Our intentions will not only put us into action or inaction but also drive the quality of our efforts, leading to potentially different outcomes. This can hold true for our training sessions as a whole and each inch of movement throughout our session. Intentional eating habits can also prove to have a huge effect on outcome.

Bringing this specific mindfulness to our fitness habits is truly the catalyst for efficiency. Let’s take a look at where we can grow stronger in intention by understanding how it affects output.

Intention’s Affects

In Training Performance

  • Purposeful Programming:

It is one thing to simply “move more.” Maybe we just want to “burn more calories” or keep our blood pumping. So, we start something like running 5 times a week. In that case, we may think our intention doesn’t need to be too intense and we need to just do it, however, we should really ask ourselves, will this generate the outcome I’m actually looking for?

Training programs should be created with outcome, level, and limitations in mind. There should be reasoning for exercise selection. We can’t have the proper intention throughout a movement if we don’t know why that exercise was selected for us to do.

For example, if we are given a front foot elevated split squat, what is the purpose behind it and what should I be thinking about when performing this movement? If we are programmed to row for 500 meters, what am I trying to accomplish?

  • Mindful Movement:

Real training goes beyond the external presentation and into neurological control of our physiology. When it comes to lifting, beginners can become frustrated with how difficult this can feel. For this reason, performing tempo work can help us spend more time in a movement to increase our neurological control of performance. In other words, we get more efficient at movements when we spend more time doing them.

In conjunction with the example above, when performing a front foot elevated split squat, knowing the purpose is to increase ankle and hip mobility to better target the quads, we will have a higher intention focused on feeling the ideal mechanics fire up rather than allowing improper triggers to steal energy.

Being able to direct all aspects of the body will increase our ability to produce force and or speed while avoiding injury.

  • Avoiding Injury: 

A large percentage of the time, injury is a result of mindless movement or moments when we just weren’t paying attention. While the pain might be onset from a single movement, chances are it is an expression of accumulated offenses of mindless movement, or improper intention, compounded over time.

Injuries should rarely happen while training if we bring the proper intention to movements. Awareness of the body alone can help decrease this unwanted risk.

On Nutritional Habits

  • Mindful Eating: 

Hunger is a real physiological feeling. However, if we just consumed an entire meal and are still feeling hungry, we may have to ask ourselves some questions.

In our very busy culture, we can find ourselves eating on the go, or even forgetting to eat (pretty unlikely for some of us!). This can cause us to make mindless choices that lead to an unwanted outcome. Simply slowing down a bit and asking a question about our intention can drastically alter our decisions.

We can also work on really focusing on each bite. Think about the taste and the texture. Chew! Turn the tv off and put the phone down. Count your chews. Okay, yeah, these tactics might sound weird and very foreign but mindful eating has proven better digestion, and better digestion means less stress on the body, less stress on the body means better recovery, and better recovery means better results.

  • Properly Matched Nutrition:

“I just need to eat less” to lose weight can fall quickly under the same category as “move more” to burn calories. It is not an efficient intention and will produce undesirable habits.

Nutrition really is fuel for bodily functions, including muscular and neurological! Just as our physical programming needs intention, there needs to be a reason for why we are consuming certain foods.

In the end, wouldn’t we want to feel energized and satisfied while also obtaining a desired outward appearance? Well, yeah! But we have to know that is possible before setting out to just eat less. Having a well balanced nutritional blueprint that will best serve our lifestyle and complement our training program is what will ultimately lead to long term success.

Sometimes we have a good intention, but it’s direction or intensity simply doesn’t lead to the results we want. Our intentions need to set us up, not just for the end result, but each moment from beginning to end.

This is all easier said than done. Without the experience, it can be very difficult, or even impossible, to set up proper expectations and intentions for a fitness journey.

That’s why we created NexT Training Plus, a new bundle package that includes membership, training, and most importantly, nutritional guidance! Not only will you obtain the benefits of having an experienced coach cueing you through every second of a session, you’ll obtain a more focused and directed way of thinking about your nutrition. Fill out the form below to set up a meeting with one of our coaches and increase your training efficiency today.

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