Kris Gethin is the founder of his online coaching website and the Kris Gethin Gyms Franchise.


Without focus there is a lack of mental intention, which must be present to connect the mind and muscles to achieve the kind of intensity needed to stimulate significant trauma. Envisage the muscle working and how it feels, as the resistance begins to suffocate it with overload. Arnold Schwarzenegger always used to use an analogy where he would imagine his biceps filling up with each rep, which kept his mind focused at all times.

Focus requires the removal of all distractions which takes some considerable effort in 2020, with all of the technology we are surrounded by. This article will give you a step-by-step guide to getting fully focused before and during the workout, for rapid results!


Get Focused

Crushing distractions starts before the workout has even begun. When the brain is exclusively focused on the task in hand it becomes blinkered, naturally shutting out everything else. In the hour leading up to your training session start envisaging the workout and what you’re about to experience to the point you can smell the pain. Put some music on in the car whilst traveling to the gym that forces the hairs on the back of your neck to stand up. Once you set foot inside the gym, your brain should already be fixated on training and nothing else. Sometimes watching training videos of an athlete who inspires you before going to the gym is a great way to ignite that inner beast. Spend 10-20 seconds before each set blocking everything out and concentrating on nothing but the next set you’re about to do. Starting a set without complete focus can mean each rep feels heavier, therefore you fail quicker.


Wear Headphones

Headphones are great for killing distractions because they transform the workout into a completely solo environment. It is you, the weight and the music pumping against your ear drums. This helps sustain focus by making the workout more visceral. As euphoric emotions begin to populate your brain, external distractions have less opportunity to get in the way. Practically speaking, headphones are an instant conversation killer. Even when my battery runs out, I will keep my headphones on, so they act as a barrier to conversation in the gym. It might seem selfish or rude, but I am there to train, not chat. This should be true for you too.


Don’t Engage In Conversation

Being approachable in the gym means you’re more likely to get caught up in conversation. What was meant to be a polite “hello” turns into a five-minute chat. All of a sudden, blood has stopped pumping around the body quite as aggressively and the mental vigor has diminished. This sensation can often feel like falling off a cliff edge, going from being ultra-focused to relaxed. For the purposes of training with complete intensity, you cannot afford to let this occur. Avoiding eye contact with people helps. If somebody still tries to chat, politely highlight you’re short on time and will say “hello” at the end of your session. Control your environment or suffer the consequences of being controlled by it.


Keep Time

Distractions are more likely to strike when there is spare time. By tracking rest intervals closely between sets it is much easier to limit the room for distractions. With the appropriate level of intensity, where every set is causing severe trauma you should need every second to recover, not become distracted. Keep rest intervals short and be stringent with time keeping. Another time-related hack is to give yourself a limited amount of time to get the whole workout complete. Having already made the effort to train you will want to get the entire workout done. Affording yourself a limited timescale to complete the workout allows you to become more focused and far less tolerant of distractions.


Pick The Right Gym

The correct training environment is imperative to progression and one reason for this is the fact that distractions are less prevalent. Serious training gyms are generally occupied by people who appreciate the value of training intensity. It’s a place these people value because it allows them to train without distraction while making all the noise they need to progress. Proper gyms provide the correct environment to do this. By participating in this training atmosphere, distractions will not be so common as you’re surrounded by like-minded people. Also, look to select an appropriate time. Everybody knows that getting a good chest workout done at 6pm on a Monday night in most gyms is going to be impossible. Try to pick a time where you’re able to train with fluidity rather than being confined to waiting around for things to become free. This dead time often leads to distraction and mental boredom.

Don’t Be Contactable

If you’re like most of the world, your cell phone will be glued to your hand or head for most of the day. In the gym this needs to change – you should not be contactable. Sustaining the right level of mental excitement whilst training is a difficult task. External stress from work or personal life cannot come into the gym because it will crush your focus. The only way to prevent this from happening is to leave your cell phone outside of the gym.


Partners Matter

Align yourself with a like-minded training partner who is as desperate as you are to progress – this instantly injects some competition into each workout, which by default demands complete focus. You don’t have to be at the same physical level, but you must both share an equal desire to succeed.


Focus means you can intensify the contraction of the muscles which are working – this induces more high-threshold activity, eventually multiplying the amount of stimulation you can attain within a workout. If you are serious, it is time to get focused!