Chad Howse

What I’ve Learned

Chad Howse Blue Steel

Blue steel? Lesson #1: don’t take yourself too seriously.

I’m not ‘naturally’ like this

If you’re frustrated because you feel like you can’t build muscle or lose fat, and you feel like no matter how hard you work and train, you can’t build the body you want. Know that I was born with a body that was the furthest thing from my ideal.

For my first 7 years in the gym I gained ZERO pounds of lean muscle. Had minimal strength gains and was about the most frustrated human being on the face of the earth. But, things happen for a reason. When I finally figured out what I was doing wrong, my gains skyrocketed and I haven’t looked back since. The thing is, without those years of failure, feeling like I was cursed by shitty genetics, I wouldn’t be able to help other guys with the same problems, reach their goals.

As it stands today, I feel great about how I perform and look, but I also know what it’s like not to. And I know exactly what to fix to make those gains happen. And happen fast.

Hard Work Pays Off

My best gains in the gym always came when I was working my hardest, particularly when it came to lifting to failure. No matter what kind of sets and reps I was doing in the gym, I got the best results when I actually lifted to failure on every single set (within proper form).

Some say lifting to failure is too hard on your body, and it might feel as though it is at first. But that’s where you have to work hard on recovering, not just training. Learn to enjoy the pain that occurs up to failure, and you’ll learn how to build lean muscle.

What do you stand for?

Who are you if you stand for nothing? It can be simple like you stand for quality, both from yourself and those around you. It doesn’t matter what your values are as long as they make you a better, happier and more successful person.

If you stand for nothing, or never take a stance on anything. Who are you? Be who you are and what you believe in. You’re going to waver. You’re going to fail. But do your best, live your best, and don’t sell your soul for a couple bucks or limited happiness. Know what your values are and work hard to maintain them.

The right song can make a workout

Find what lights a fire under your ass and use it. If it’s a quote, read that quote at the beginning of everyday and dominate it. If it’s music. Find that song that pumps you up and have a quality, intense workout. Why do something half assed? Bring your emotions into the situations where they’ll benefit you. And leave them out of the things where they’ll hinder you.

Don’t make decisions based on emotion

I have done this far too often in life. But I’m learning to use my head a bit more, while still giving my heart it’s say. The thing is, your emotions change so often that they can lie to you sometimes. I’m not saying that your heart lies to you. It never does. But your emotions can cloud the connection between your heart and your mind.

Make clear decisions with your heart and your mind. Leave your emotions out of the process as much as possible.

We read to know we are not alone – C.S. Lewis

I love TV. It’s how I wind down at the end of a day. Reading ignites my mind. A lot of people can read before they go to bed but it just ends up motivating me. So, I’ve scheduled reading into my days – even if it’s only 15 minutes. If you’re constantly reading, you’re constantly growing and moving forward.

Thank God for unanswered prayers

Sometimes the greatest gift we can receive, is not getting what we want. Sometimes what we want isn’t what’s best for us. It might hurt like hell if we don’t get it, especially if it’s something really important to us and our happiness. But understanding that line above can be an eye opener.

How you look is important

Everybody cares how they look. Even those that ‘don’t’, do. They are trying so hard not to care how they look and in turn they end up caring how they look. It’s by far not the most important thing in life. But it is important for a few reasons.

The better you look, the better you feel about yourself and the more confident you are. Confidence is an amazing thing. It allows you to be the person you are meant to be. Confidence is why looking good is important.

Learn to laugh at yourself

Thinking you’re the shit or God’s gift to the world isn’t the smartest thing to do. At some point you’ll have to wake up and see your faults. Living is a humbling experience. Laugh at yourself on a daily basis. Understand that you have room to grow, but also understand that you have something amazing and unique to offer the world, and one day you’ll realize what that is. If you haven’t yet.

What’s an important lesson you’ve learned?

What do you need help with?

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  • Kasey

    A few things I've learned..

    1. Never stop learning.. 2. Most everyone will think they are right, even when they're wrong. Be willing to admit when you're wrong and make a change.. 3. Make goals, write them down, and do everything in your power to reach them. Make choices that take you closer to your goals. I used to think it was lame, but it's important to know what you want and where you're going. and when you reach them, make new ones.. 4. figure out what you love to do and find a way to do it. far too many people hate their jobs and are unhappy.. 5. A good attitude/mindset goes a long way.. 6. Always be nice, respectful, and appreciative no matter what.. 7. Always, always, always strive to be better.

    Thanks Chad, good stuff as always!

    • http://www.chadhowsefitness.com/ Chad Howse

      Great lessons Kasey!

      Thanks for the comment, I wish I had a few of those in my article.

      Chad

  • Tony San Luis

    Great article, Chad and wonderful reply, Kasey. Both bring up some points to think about and CONSTANTLY consider.

  • Andrew

    If I had to say one lesson I've learned in training is that the number of times you get back up is more important that the number of times you fall. Or, as Jedd Johnson says, "Misses are just warm-ups."