Mind Games – 18 Powerful Mental Strategies to Get More Reps Out Of Every Set

Getting More Reps Out Of Every Set

Learn how to take your body further than you ever thought possible. Your mind is the real key to achieving unbelievable results.

Peak performance is a state of mind. No matter how prepared your body is, if your mind is not functioning at the top of its game, your performance will suffer. This is true of any sport and extremely true in weight training. Your muscles may do the actual work, but what is sending the message to do that work? Your mind!

There are many techniques you can use to help your mind push your body far beyond what you may believe you’re capable of. These mental tricks can help you get more results out of every single set you do.

1. Rewards

Say you’re finishing the last few reps of a set. It’s starting to hurt and you’re ready to quit. Imagine someone just offered you a million dollars to get one more rep. You would find a way to get that rep! Use other offers that would motivate you to keep going; i.e., a special treat if you’re on a diet.

2. Ghost Spotters and Lighter Weight

Imagine someone spotting you. Imagine this ghost spotter helping you finish that rep. You can always try imagining the weight is less than it actually is, too.

3. Magnetic Force

If you’re doing dumbbell presses, imagine they are two powerful magnets that are irresistibly drawn to each other. If you’re curling, imagine your eyes as magnets attracting the bar toward them. If you’re benching, imagine the bar being repelled by your chest. This technique is especially useful on that last, slow rep. It will help you squeeze a little extra out to finish the rep.

4. Chopped-Up Sets

Here is a trick you can use to get the most out of high-rep sets: When the going gets tough, start doing consecutive small sets of five reps. When you can’t get five reps, do sets of three reps. When three reps seem impossible, convince yourself to do just two more reps. When you can’t do sets of two, tell yourself just one more rep. Keep trying to get just one more rep until you can’t move.

Breaking it up like this will allow you to get many more reps than counting straight through one big set. You can do this right from the start as well. If you are doing a set of 15 reps, do a set of five, another set of five, a set of three, then a set of two. It allows your mind to segment each part of the set into smaller goals and send strong signals to your muscles on each chopped up section.

5. Pain Management

Pain tolerance is a big factor in weight-training intensity. The more pain you can take, the harder and longer you can push. A good way to fight pain is to tell yourself that it is not your pain; it is somebody else’s. It sounds crazy, but it works.

You can also try the Corsican Twin technique. Imagine the pain you are going through is being felt by someone you don’t like. The more you put yourself through, the more punishment they take. It also helps if you’re a little masochistic. Really hard trainers learn to love the pain. (Remember, we’re not talking injury pain but hard work pain. There’s a big difference.)

6. Self-Reprimand

To push harder, you may want to try self-reprimand; i.e., telling yourself how lazy you are, how small and weak you are. You should react by vigorously trying to prove yourself wrong.

7. Self-Praise

Self-praise is also good. Tell yourself how big and strong and powerful you are and how this weight is child’s play. This puts you in a positive mind set before each set.

8. Pre and Intra-Workout Preparation

To lift like a beast, you need to prep well before you start warming up. Approximately 30 minutes before you grab the iron, you need to take 2 servings of PRE-GRO™ MAX. Soon after drinking it down, you’ll feel the power of this full-featured pre workout. Energy and focus becomes laser like, and strength and recovery kick in soon after. The final piece to the puzzle however is an exaggerated pump due to the Plasma Expansion Matrix. Team this up with AMINO-GRO® during your workout to deliver ample BCAAs and to experience the hydration and electrolytes from the coconut water powder for top performance.

9. The Little Voice in Your Head

Reprogram the little voice in your head. Most people have a little voice in their heads that warns them not to do things that may seem unreasonable or threatening; e.g., you better not do that or you’ll hurt yourself; you can’t lift that much; this hurts, let’s quit. This voice can undermine your confidence to lift extremely heavy weight or get those last few reps.

Reprogram your little voice to tell you things like: that felt pretty good, let’s add more weight, or you can do another rep. Don’t get too out of control, but don’t be scared. You can usually do more than you think you can, and you never know until you try. Don’t automatically assume you’ll never accomplish anything or you never will.

10. Set Unreasonable Goals

Set almost unreasonable but achievable goals for yourself. Say, for example, you know you can curl 50 pounds for ten reps. Set the goal of 12 reps and fight madly to get those 12. It gives you the incentive to improve. Small mental challenges.

11. Competitions

Have competitions with a training partner or with yourself. Whoever gets the most reps with a certain weight or percentage of bodyweight has to buy dinner. Challenge yourself to break personal bests and reward yourself when you do. This type of competition can dramatically increase intensity.

12. Explosive Imagery

Just before a set, put images of explosive power in your head; e.g., rockets, artillery, a stampede, explosions, etc. This form of imagery will start up your adrenaline and give you a little extra kick in the pants to get your set going. Imagine this explosive power rocketing the weights you are using.

13. Mind in Muscle

Try to put your mind in the muscle you’re working. Try to consciously fire the muscle fibers. Close your eyes and visualize…

14. Contact

Getting a spotter to just touch you and not push can give you extra force. This is partly psychological and partly physical. The contact of energy fields can actually give you a little extra lift. It is not all in your head, and it is not all quackery. It works!

15. Positive and Negative Stimuli

When doing exercises where you are pushing something away from you; e.g., bench, imagine the bar as a negative stimulus (somebody you don’t like, a chainsaw, etc.). When doing exercises where you are pulling something toward you, imagine the bar as a positive stimulus (somebody you do like, a favorite food, etc.).

16. Borrow Energy

Borrow energy from other people. This can be done before a set or when the going is getting tough. Using a mirror or looking directly, look at someone squarely in the eyes. Give them a smile or a nod or a psychotic grin and imagine yourself drawing energy from them. At that point, two people are focusing their energy on the set. You may or may not make friends with this one.

17. Mentor

Imagine you have a mentor or someone you are trying to impress standing over you and watching as you do your set. Imagine they are encouraging you and pushing you harder and harder.

18. Threats

Threats can also work. If someone put a gun to your head and said “do three more reps,” you would find a way to get those reps. Imagine this situation to get those reps.

Give some of these techniques a try in your next workout. We guarantee you’ll take yourself far beyond where you’ve gone before!