How to use visualisation to hit your goals

Fitness First trainer Ashleigh Boehm (above) explains how she visualises her lifting goals to take her strength sessions to the next level.

Prior to your session, find a quiet space to sit. Visualise the workout, everything from putting on your shoes, warming up, adding weight to the bar etc. Play out the entire session in your head, feel the bar on your back and your feet grounded firmly to the earth. Imagine every lift being executed with perfect precision until you reach the goal you want to achieve. Visualise yourself achieving your goal and feel the satisfaction and pride. Attaching a strong, positive emotion to your visualisation is crucial.

1. Approach the bar with absolute confidence. Let it know who’s in charge. Feel your feet firmly planted to the ground — solid like a tree with deep roots. This will assist in your lift by engaging more muscle fibres and create a strong neural drive.

2. With the bar on your back or in your hands, imagine a successful lift. Concentrate on every single rep and feel your muscle fibres contracting.

3. Finally, replay the lift in your mind. Use this post-lift phase to begin correcting a problem or even imagine adding more weight. If you identified a problem, imagine another successful lift in which you correct it.

Breaking through limits

You’ll never surpass the limits you’ve placed on yourself. If you tell yourself the most you can deadlift is 100kg, or that you’ve never been capable of losing more than a couple of kilos, then that will be the case. The moment you accept the limit, you build a wall that attracts a stronger limit.

If you want a 120kg deadlift, visualise performing 130kg. If you’re aiming for 18% body fat, picture yourself at 16% right now. If you believe, deep within your subconscious with absolute certainty that you have already achieved these goals, then they will be yours.