You have all heard of the 'zone'. We've all been in the zone at one point or another whether it is before a workout, competition or when we are just trying to get through a difficult task. But what actually is the zone?
Well according to Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the former head of psychology at the University of Chicago, this mental state is called 'Flow'. Apparently it doesn't occur all the time, or every workout for example, but occurs at specific times where there is an interception between a high level of challenge and skill.
So how do you get into this 'flow' or into 'the zone'?
1. Firstly a great idea is to know what you are doing. By this I mean have a plan before you walk into the gym so that you are organised and therefore you reduce decision fatigue. This therefore means that you have more brain space for what you are actually doing, and you can give something your all without worrying about what comes next!
2. Next, similar to the above mentioned point, ensure you know how to perform the exercises in your plan. When you ensure that exercises are familiar, then you can look at increasing the skill of the challenge and fall into that state of flow.
3. Challenging yourself is an absolute must! If you do not push yourself, you will not need to get into 'the zone' or find a mental state, as it will be an easy task mentally and physically.
4. Push your thinking into a positive state of mind in order to increase your optimal performance. Convince yourself that you are amazing at this particular exercise and that you CAN reach your personal best.. it will shift your state of mind to want to challenge yourself.
5. Visualisation is so important. Think about what you want, and focus on this before you start your training. This will help you realise that you need to work hard and that it is important to you to increase your skill and challenge yourself. It will motivate you and get you pumped for what you are about to do!
There are tons of things you can do to get into 'the zone'. Clear your mind and use some of the above tips to help you! Give it a go... give your workout your FULL attention and see how much better you perform!