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Why Is It Hard To See Your Progress? Body Dysmorphia and Negative Self Image

Why Is It Hard To See Your Progress? Body Dysmorphia And Negative Self Image

Transcript of the video below:


Is it possible to lose 100 pounds

and still feel fat?

Is it possible to go from being someone

who’s slightly overweight to a champion bodybuilder

and still feel like you’re fat?

Is it possible to be six feet tall, 125 pounds,

and become a champion natural bodybuilder

and still feel like you’re skinny?

The answer to all of these is a resounding yes.

And in this video, I’m going to talk a little bit

about something that we don’t talk about very much,

which is how a negative self-image

is very often the catalyst, the driving force

that pushes us to do things like lose weight,

to do things like transform our body, build muscle.

But that, unless somewhere along the line,

we learn to develop a positive self-image

and learn to allow ourselves to be driven

not by forces of discontent with how we look,

but of self-acceptance,

that we ultimately can end up sabotaging

any progress that we make.

In this video, I’m going to talk about

how people can really sabotage their progress

if they don’t learn to see themselves

and see their progress.

I’m also going to talk about what you can do

to help yourself see your progress

and share a little bit about my journey as well

because I’m that skinny kid who was 125 pounds

and was competing as a bodybuilder decades later

and still feeling like a skinny kid.

And I’m also the one who’s trained people

who’ve lost over 100 pounds

and seen them lose all of their gains

because they were unable to see themselves

as they really were.

We’ll talk a little bit more about this.

And thanks for tuning in.


Hi, thank you so much for tuning in.

I am Kevin Richardson.

Personal trainer, natural bodybuilder, nutritionist,

and I’m really happy that you took the time to tune in.

I’m also really happy by the amount of positive response

that we’ve had so far to these videos.

I will be continuing to put out

as much content as I can on a regular basis.

So if you haven’t already, do be sure to like and subscribe,

so you’ll always be first in line

when something new comes up.

But also, feel free in the comment section

to tell me if there’s any particular topic

that you would like me to cover

because I’m always happy to hear from you.

So today we’re talking about self-image,

and self-image is a very personal topic

because it’s one that affects

and affected not just my clients,

but affected me personally.

And I think that as we go along in this video,

we will talk about the biological basis

for why it is that we suffer so much

by not being able to see our progress, why that is.

Why is it so hard for us to see our progress?

And we’ll talk also about how important it is

to see our progress, because if we don’t,

we tend to make bad decisions

that over time, can undo all that we’ve done.


weight loss body dysmorphia

The Tragic Story Of A Client Who Lost Over 100lbs But Couldn’t See Any Progress


I’m going to start with a very sad example

and I will term it and phrase it

as my first great personal training accomplishment,

and my first great personal training failure.

And that particular case

is the case of a former client of mine,

one of my first clients in my second year

as a personal trainer,

who we will call Mr. A,

who lost 103 pounds training with me.

Now, a little background about my particular training style.

It’s high intensity training three times a week,

and the workouts lasts

anywhere between 10, 15 minutes, that’s it.

No cardio, everything with regard to weight loss

is a combination of those three high intensity workouts

and dietary instruction that’s given directly

from me, to my clients.

Now, today, I’ve had the privilege,

the honor, and the blessing

of having worked with dozens of people

who’ve lost over 50 pounds.

And I would probably say somewhere about

six or seven, who’ve lost 100 pounds over the past 30 years.

But the first one was a complete surprise to me.

I had no idea that my training style

was going be something that could help somebody

lose that much weight.

I was a teenager, I was maybe 18 years old

when I first started treating Mr. A

and I did see that there was some potential

for weight loss with my training style

because I had my first client

who had lost some weight with it,

but he was one of those perfect clients.

People who do everything you tell them to do.

I gave him a dietary guide, he followed it to the T.

We had three sessions a week,

he showed up at every single session.

As he kept on going,

he kept on losing more and more weight.

And the more weight he lost,

the happier he seemed to become.

Now, Mr. A was a very eloquent and loquacious man,

middle-aged, always talking,

and really the type of person who fills a room

with his presence.

And as he lost more and more weight,

he became so much more animated, so much more vocal.

He would literally end up being

one of my greatest ambassadors

because he would stop everyone that he could

before his workouts, to tell them how much progress he had made,

to talk about how fantastic the whole training program was,

and how happy he was with his accomplishment.

Really and truly, a joy to see someone

transform in front of my eyes.

And over the course of about 13, 14 months,

he had lost 103 pounds.

And every once in a while,

he would even bring in his old pants

to show just how big he was.

It was remarkable, I mean, truly remarkable.

And I had never, as a young trainer,

seen any type of weight loss like that first hand.

It was the first time I’d ever seen anybody

undergo such a remarkable transformation.

And I was so happy, I really was so happy

for myself, as far as being able to have helped him,

and also for Mr. A.

I really felt so proud of him,

what he had accomplished, of what he had done.

But then something curious happened.

The normally gregarious, Mr. A became quiet,

he’d come to the gym,

and he wouldn’t say as much as he would before.

He stopped talking about his accomplishment,

and I would ask him what was wrong,

and he would say everything was fine.

Until one day, he very abruptly said

that he felt like he hadn’t lost any weight whatsoever.

And that it had all been for nothing.

Now, I’ve had the honor as well

of spending a good 17 years of my life, my adult life,

working in social services during which period of time

I was really privileged as well to have learned so much

in terms of clinical psychology and working with individuals

in terms of mental health issues,

and also issues like body image.

But at the time I’m an 18, maybe 19 year old teenager.

I have no idea why it is and how it could be

that Mr. A, who had lost over 100 pounds,

couldn’t see that he had lost any weight at all.

He really felt like he hadn’t achieved anything.

And it was puzzling, it was disconcerting,

it was disturbing to me.

It literally kept me up at night

because I would really feel,

not just a matter of confused, but I was worried about him,

I was really worried about Mr. A.

And sure enough, he started missing workouts,

which wasn’t like him.

Then he started

eating off his diet and it was at that point

that I came here to the United States

and I never saw Mr. M, Mr. A, sorry, again.

But I kept in touch with people who were good friends of his

and they said that he, within the course

of a couple of months after my departure,

put all the weight back on.

Now, anyone who knows me knows that I pride myself,

not on being a weight loss specialist.

I pride myself on being the person that helps people

lose weight and keep the weight off

by teaching them life lessons

that’ll allow them to sustainably keep their weight off.

And here I was having had this client

who had lost so much weight and put it all back on,

probably even a little bit more than he initially had,

and I felt like I failed him, and I did fail him.

And I realized that I needed to incorporate

a lot more in terms of self-awareness and self-image

when working with my clients,

not just focus on the physical.

With Mr. A, I was spot on with all the physical parts,

his diet, making the tweaks in his diet as he went along,

his training, making sure the intensity was just enough

to help him both build muscle

and lose body fat at the same time.

But we never spoke about the psychological implications

of what it is to transform.

And after Mr. A, I really began to look into it,

not just for my other clients, but also for myself.

So with my clients, I could clearly see that

if you weren’t able to see the progress that you made,

you’re much more likely to become frustrated

for all that work you did,

and then undo everything that you did.

bodybuilding dysmorphia
The Author before and after

Kevin’s Struggle With Body Dysmorphia As A Bodybuilder


The understanding of why it is that self-image

was so difficult to see when there’s a change in our bodies

became really personal because Mr. A helped me reflect

a little bit more on my own dissonance between who I was,

how I looked, and how I felt.

You see, at the time when I was probably about,

let’s say 20 years old,

I had already been competing

in my native Trinidad and Tobago as a bodybuilder.

I was able to hold my own on stage with bodybuilders.

I started bodybuilding at 125 pounds, six feet tall,

and I competed at 198 pounds right before I left Trinidad.

So that’s a pretty big difference, 125 pounds to 198 pounds.

And yet, if I was honest with myself,

I would have to say that I didn’t really see

a change in my body.

I felt very, very much, and I know this sounds crazy because

it in some ways is, a little bit,

I almost saw the body that I had

as this kind of abstract transient thing

that wasn’t really me.

That what was really me was a skinny kid

and that what I saw in the mirror really didn’t reflect

what I really looked like.

Now, I would go on to compete here in United States

very successfully, as a natural bodybuilder, again.

Competing at really high natural bodybuilding levels

and years went on.

I got even into my thirties,

I made a natural bodybuilding DVD,

and I was still struggling

with not seeing myself as a skinny kid.

But I was working all during that time

to be able to see myself as I was

because I understood how dangerous it was

for me to be where I was.

It wasn’t healthy for me just to keep on thinking,

“Well, I’m a skinny kid.

I’ll never have big muscular arms.

I’ll never have a really built physique.”

That handicap that I felt I started off with, being skinny,

being not really a big person, was one of the driving forces

to make me become a bodybuilder.

But as I went on, I could clearly see

from the examples of other bodybuilders around me,

who I worked with,

that this negativity, even though it’s really

almost ubiquitous in the bodybuilding world,

this sense that we’re not good enough,

that we need to get better, that we’re this skinny person,

or we’re this overweight person

and that we need to transform ourselves,

and no matter how much you transform

it’s never good enough because we can’t really see it.

Others can, we can collect trophies,

we can be on magazines, covers, sorry.

We can be in videos, we can be all over Instagram,

we can be very, very popular,

we can have thousands of people comment

on how fantastic we look,

but it just,

it tends to be hard for a lot of us in this field

to see ourselves that way.


The Surprisingly High Rate Of Skewered Self Image In Bodybuilding And It’s Negative Effects


What I saw, especially in the natural bodybuilding world

was that a lot of natural bodybuilders

who were competing at the highest level

had that same discord between what they looked like

and how they saw themselves.

And what I saw as well was the ones who were really unable

to see themselves the way they were,

were the ones who were the most tortured, yes,

but also the ones who ended up eventually

using anabolic steroids,

abandoning the path of natural body building completely

because they needed to be more.

They felt that they weren’t good enough

and they felt that all that they had accomplished

didn’t amount to anything.

And again, these are some of the top natural bodybuilders

of all time, some of them.

And they had remarkable physiques, they looked fantastic,

but they weren’t happy, number one,

and they never really enjoyed their physicality

because they didn’t see themselves that way.

And I

was self-aware enough

and I thank Mr. A’s experience for really focusing me

on trying to not fall into that trap.

And trying to learn how not to be part of that movement

of people in the fitness industry

who look fantastic on the outside,

but don’t feel fantastic on the inside,

and so over time, tend to sabotage themselves,

tend to do really unhealthy things

either to undo what they’ve accomplished

or to do extreme things like use drugs

because they don’t feel like they’re good enough.

I didn’t want to have to deal with any of that.

I didn’t want to go down that path.

I also wanted to be at peace.

And I also, very importantly,

wanted to be somebody who was not hypocritical,

telling my clients how important it was

to have a positive self-image

when I didn’t really have one myself.

I had to put the work in, from the way I saw it,

to do my utmost to come to some sense of equilibrium

with who I was on the outside and who I was on the inside.

why it's so hard to see our progress

How Not Seeing Your Progress Can Easily Make You Undo Your Progress


And my personal training work really helped me as well

understand how important it was

that we talk about that particular topic.

Because what would tend to happen with most of my clients,

and I don’t say some, I say most,

at some point, they’re working really, really hard,

they’re doing really, really, really well

and they have a bad day.

For some, it’s a bad day, for some it’s a bad week,

some it’s bad days and they keep on happening,

they keep on having from time to time.

And during those bad days,

they feel like they didn’t do much of anything.

They look in the mirror and they feel like, you know,

they may have lost 50 pounds, they don’t see it.

They may have transformed their bodies

and really have a perfect, sleek, tight, toned physique,

just the way they wanted it,

but that day, they didn’t feel that way.

They may have been getting ready for a bodybuilding,

bikini, figure, or a fitness competition,

and they just have that feeling,

even though they’re in really great shape,

that they were totally out of shape,

not a little out of shape, but totally out of shape.

And I became really good at helping people

walk their way through that feeling

and make them understand that it’s a feeling.

It’s how you feel about that image

in the mirror that you’re seeing.

And whenever I would work with someone going through

that period of “I’m not good enough,

I don’t feel like I did anything, I feel like a failure,

I feel like a fraud, I feel like an impostor,

I feel like I didn’t put any work in at all,

I feel like I made no progress whatsoever,”

whenever I work with someone who is having those feelings,

they became priorities because I knew what happens

if it’s not addressed.

If you keep on thinking that all that work you put in,

all of the years, sometimes, of work you put in

didn’t really amount to anything, if you dwell on it,

you would self-sabotage, you will undo it.

You will say, “Well, I ate healthy for all these months

and I don’t really feel like I did much of anything.

I’m going to eat unhealthy.

Forget it, screw it, I’m going to go off my diet.

I’m not going to go to the gym, I’m not going to go work out,

I’m not going to show up for my appointments.”

It’s what tends to happen.

It’s a very common thing that happens

and it’s important to have someone

when you’re standing on that ledge

thinking that all that you’ve done

hasn’t amounted to anything,

that someone is there to kind of nudge you along.

Now it’s not something spoken about

much in the fitness industry at all.

It’s almost a taboo subject.

In fact, you might be surprised just how many

of your favorite fitness personalities

who probably, in their private moments,

struggle with their self-image.

And I know this for a fact because I know a lot of them

and I’ve had a lot of the same conversations

with some of the top fitness names on the planet,

as I have with some of my clients who lost 10 pounds

and felt like they didn’t achieve anything.

The same conversation.

I have the same conversation

with someone who’s lost 20 pounds, 30 pounds,

and feel like they didn’t do anything

as I do with someone who is arguably among some of the top

or considered to be among some of the top

bodies on the planet.

So that leads to a very important point,

which is if you ever feel

that all that you did is for nothing,

and what you see in the mirror

doesn’t reflect all the work you did,

and you feel like it’s all worthless,

it’s important to understand that that’s very much normal.

There’s nothing wrong with you.

And that a lot of people, in fact,

more people than you would imagine,

feel exactly the same way.

It’s extremely common.

And here’s my working hypothesis as to why that is.


evolutionary explanation for distorted self image and dysmorphia

An Evolutionary Hypothesis That Explains Why It’s Difficult To See Our Body Transformations


Now, diet-wise, everything that I

talk about and put forward in terms of nutrition

is usually based on evolutionary biology.

And I feel that evolutionary biology also has a place

in the psychology of how we as humans see ourselves

and how we deal with something

as novel as body transformation.

So on a dietary point of view, if you eat something

that’s, let’s say, a modern processed food,

I’ll throw one out for example.

Let’s say you’re eating something horrible

like, let’s say some heavily processed sugary cereals.

Now eating some of those cold sugar cereals

is akin to putting something into your body

that over the past 2.2 million years

of our time on the planet, never existed in the human diet.

And so because of that discord, again,

between how humans and our human ancestors have been eating

shaped by our environment that shaped our bodies,

if we eat outside of those particular parameters

and introduce new and novel foods into our diet,

very often, those novel foods can have some

pretty negative side effects

because our bodies aren’t adapted to work with them.

Our bodies are designed to consume carbohydrates

that are naturally high in bulk, high in fiber,

tend to be also of a particular quantity

that you do not get that much of it at one point in time.

So by eating a box of sugary cereal,

your body’s getting more calories

than it normally would at one point, that’s number one,

it is getting simple sugars in quantities

and at speed of quicker delivery to your blood

that is not something that would ever happen

under natural circumstances, and all that sugar coming in

is coming in with the absence of fiber.

Now, because of that discrepancy between

what our bodies are built to take in,

which is carbohydrates that are high in fiber,

low in sugars, high in bulk,

compared to a processed food, which is low in fiber,

high in calories, high in sugar.

And again, the zero fiber is a problem as well,

which also makes it easier to eat a lot of it.

There are consequences.

There are consequences in terms of how our insulin

levels rise unnaturally as a result of eating such a food.

There are consequences in terms of how it can, over time,

really create an environment for fat deposits.

Really high insulin levels, your body has no idea

why it is that you have so many calories,

so much sugars coming in at one point in time,

so your body says, “All right, we don’t know what to do

with all this coming in, store it.

How do we store it?


And we can see a clear connection between certain foods,

especially processed foods,

which tend to create not just fat storage,

but fat storage in places

where normally humans do not tend to store fat.

It is called visceral abdominal fat.

That is the fat that’s stored around your organs

that creates that stomach that is so much a ubiquitous

part of modern living for most people past a certain age.

And it’s not natural.

It’s a result of us doing something that’s not natural.

It’s eating not natural foods

because our bodies aren’t adapted to it.

Now, how does that have to do with self-image?

It’s the same thing.

If we consider the fact that homo sapiens have been

the product of those millions of years of evolution,

and evolution is simply the progression of a species

shaped by the environment to survive in that environment

in order to get to the point where the species

can reproduce successfully.

So because of that, there are a lot of things

that are innately human that don’t necessarily line up

with what we would probably call objective reality.

See, objective reality is how the universe actually is.

And none of us can see objective reality.

We see reality through the lens of a body, a creature,

a species that’s designed to survive

in a very concrete world.

We don’t see quarks, we don’t see atoms,

we don’t see the effects of quantum physics

in our everyday lives.

All of those things are millions of miles

away from our consciousness.

We can understand intellectually, some of us can,

but it’s not something that we think about in regular life.

In regular life, what we see is what there is,

and that’s pretty much all there is to it.

And that’s all shaped by evolution.


is very much a process for creating beings

that are really good at survival,

but it’s not a process designed to create beings

that are perfect.

We’re not perfect, and when I say perfect,

it means there are things about us that are lacking

in terms of even weight loss.

For all those millions of years,

obesity was never part of our makeup.

Body transformation was not really something that happened.

The transformation would happen around puberty

where you went from being a child to an adult,

male or female,

and that’s it.

There’d be some hormonal changes

that would change your body radically,

but the person that you were in puberty

was the person that you would see yourself becoming

and your late adolescent self would be the image

that you would develop of yourself

for the rest of your life.

And if you look at cultures that are very much traditional,

hunter-gatherer cultures, for example,

the older men and the older woman

don’t look that much different.

There’s the gray hair and the wrinkles, yes, but physically,

there’s not that much of a change

in terms of body composition,

the way there is here in developed countries.

No one gets fat and no one loses a lot of fat.

It doesn’t happen naturally

because under natural circumstances,

the foods that we eat do not create situations

where we can end up being overweight.

It just doesn’t happen.

And so we’re not, from an evolutionary point of view,

designed to detect and deal with

those changes in our bodies.

There’s nothing that you can think of,

from an evolutionary point of view,

that would be beneficial for us as humans

to have developed over millions of years

to say, “Well, I used to weigh this much,

now I weigh this much,

and so I’m going to see myself differently as I change.”

It never happened because, arguably,

one could say that before the 20th century,

the very idea of body transformation

was probably a really, really rare occurrence

given how much food people had access to,

given the type of food people had access to.

In most parts of the world,

it just simply didn’t happen.

This is a very new phenomenon.

It’s novel, body transformation is new.

And just like the new novel foods

that our body is going to go crazy with,

it’s the same with our ways of thinking.

We can’t process it.

We can’t figure out why is there this discrepancy

between how I see myself and what I know,

somewhere in the back of my mind, I look like.

It’s the same thing.

We’re not designed to see it.

how to overcome body image issues

How We Can Overcome Body Image Issues Through Cognitive Awareness


Just knowing this, just having that cognitive awareness

of the fact that we are not designed

to see the changes in our body, in itself sparks something.

Because unlike other animals,

we can do more than simply be shaped

by our evolutionary environment.

We can develop our own ideas,

we can develop our own ways of thinking

because we are essentially learning machines.

We can learn to see ourselves

when there’s a body composition change,

but it’s something we have to actively work at,

we have to think about it, we have to reflect about it.

We can’t be on autopilot.

Autopilot is usually going be

whatever body and physique you had during your adolescence

to late adolescence, is the body and physique

you’ll always think you have for the rest of your life.

That’s default.

If you’re going to change your body,

be it weight loss, weight gain,

be it putting on muscle, be it losing pounds of body fat,

you have to do some true work with your self awareness.

If you lose five pounds,

no matter how much you write it down,

I wrote down every single pound I put on.

I wrote down the measurements of my biceps as I went along,

I wrote down the circumference

of my thighs, my calves, my neck.

I had all these numbers written down that could clearly show

that I was no longer 125 pounds

and I was no longer the skinny kid with 12 inch arms.

It was there intellectually, but emotionally, it wasn’t.

One of the things that helped me was the understanding

that there is this cognitive dissonance that goes on

because of the fact that who we are

and how we see ourselves

is really formed during our adolescence

and it’s really hard not to see yourself that way,

very, very hard.

But if you don’t start seeing yourself as you are,

you risk undoing all that you’ve done.

And even more importantly,

you risk not enjoying, benefiting and being at peace

with the accomplishment that you’ve achieved.

If you’ve worked to achieve excellence,

and excellence is not meaning the best body on the planet,

that’s not excellence.

Excellence is you work to be a better you.

That work is important, that work is sacred.

That progress is sacred.

You have to start thinking of yourself that way.

When you have a bad day,

you have to be able to understand that having a bad day

is not the time to look in the mirror

and make a judgment call

as to whether or not your diet is being,

is successful or not.

It’s not the time to figure out

whether it’s the time to change your workout.

It’s not the time to figure out

whether you need to be doing more or less.

It’s not the time.

It’s the time to step back.

The same way we say, “When you’re really hungry,

don’t go shopping”

because you’re going to pick up the wrong foods.

Common sense.

Same with body image.

If you are having a bad day

and don’t really feel that good about yourself,

that’s not the time to make any decisions

as to what you’re going to do next

when it comes to your fitness.

Very, very important.

Because again, when we look in the mirror,

what we see isn’t objective reality.

Evolution doesn’t need us to see objective reality.

It doesn’t need us to see the photons coming back and forth.

It doesn’t need us to understand

that we’re a collection of cells that are turning over.

It doesn’t need us to understand visually that we are

looking at anything, but a collection of our memories,

our experiences, and this interface that we’ve gotten

used to using to perceive ourselves.

Looking in the mirror is seeing how you feel about yourself

more than anything else, and that’s important.

What you see is how you feel.

Eat some junk food when you’re in the best shape possible,

go in front of the mirror,

you’re not going to feel that you look that great

because in the back of your head, you did something,

so you feel, “Oh, it must affect the way I look.”

That’s not what’s really happening.

It’s important to see that.

It’s really important to be able to reset

and just keep on going, keep on going.

Things get better.

If you keep on going, things always get better.

If you stay long enough, stay the course.

Keep exercising, keep eating properly.

You’re going to have a good day.

When you have a good day

and you feel like you can really see,

“Hey, I made these gains.

Hey, I made this progress,”

that’s the time you make decisions,

not the times when you’re in a bad place.

Because there’s also something very insidious

about being human, and that the fact that our bodies,

like everything else in nature,

does everything to resist change.

Our bodies don’t want to change.

Our bodies want to stay the same.

And so it works with our mind

because our bodies and our minds at the same thing,

more or less, to try to make us revert

to whatever it believes is our default state.

I don’t have any hair.

When I dream, in my dreams, I have hair.

Kind of strange, but not really,

because for most of my life, I’m 47 years old,

I shaved my head somewhere in my early forties.

For 40-something years, I had hair.

So when I close my eyes

and I see a dream state version of myself, Kevin has hair.

Am I going to work on trying to see myself

in a dream state with no hair?

Probably not, but for a very long time,

when I closed my eyes and had a dream about myself,

I didn’t always see the muscles.

I did work to make sure that when I close my eyes

and see myself, I see myself as I am today,

not as how I was.

And what propels me today to keep on

reaching for excellence and training hard

and trying to be better

isn’t the desire to overcome some insecurity,

isn’t the desire to overcome some perceived handicap,

isn’t the desire to not be that skinny kid anymore,

it’s the desire to be the best me I can be today,

a little better tomorrow, because I enjoy the process.

It’s very much process-oriented.

So that’s important.

We have to get out of our heads

because being in our heads can be dangerous.

It can make us think that “screw it,

everything I’ve done is not worth it.”

It is.

It’s also worth it for you not to be tortured

and feel that the person who you were when you were younger

is the person who you are now.

That’s not going to change unless you do something about it.

There’s an old saying in Latin,

“Caelum non animum mutant qui trans mare currunt”

which translates as those who cross the seas

change their skies, not their spirits.

Same thing happens when you transform your body,

regardless of whether it’s a transformation of weight loss

or muscle gain, it doesn’t matter, you’re the same person

unless you do something to change the way you see yourself.

So work on that positivity.

And I really and truly hope

that me sharing this in this video helps you realize

that if you’ve had that particular feeling,

that you’re not alone.

It’s important that we talk about these things,

and for a lot of us,

we don’t want to talk about them because it takes away that,

you know, veneer and facade

of the person who is always in control, always positive

that’s just so prevalent in the fitness industry,

and honestly, it’s a little bit sad

because nothing is black and white.

There’s a lot of grays.

There are a lot of different colors that we have to see.

I really and truly hope this video helps

you in your personal journey.

And I really and truly hope

that you like and subscribe to the channel

and stay tuned because we will be putting in

more content on a regular basis.

I really and truly appreciate your tuning in,

and I hope to see you soon.

So keep that self-image positive and Excelsior!

See the full video here-

Why Is It Hard To See Your Progress? My Experiences with Body Transformation & Self Image Issues

Related Videos:

What To Do If You Cheat On Your Diet (And Why Guilt Makes Things Worse!)

What If You Believed You Were Taking Steroids- The Placebo Effect In Action

The Healthy Way To Use A Scale (And Why The Scale Numbers Keep Changing)

High Intensity Bodyweight Training: Ballistic Pushups & Dips!

This was a tough one!

Starts out with ballistic push ups (like clap pushups but without the clap as my wrist is still not 100%) nonstop for 20 reps, then all out on dips for 10 reps.

To say it was painful would be an understatement, but you just have to push through and keep on going.

Still training, hope you are too and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#hometraining #homeworkout #homeworkout #highintensitytraining #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #fitover40 #naturalbodybuildingvideos #chestday #chesttraining #naturalbodybuildingtips #pushups #dips #bodyweighttraining #highintensitytrainingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #calesthenics

13 2

Kevin's Unconventional Biceps Training- 3-6 Minutes a Week!

In this video I go over my biceps training using the Naturally Intense High Intensity Training protocols that helped me go from having arms measuring 11.5 to 12 inches to 18 inches drug free!

It's an unconventional approach for certain, but it's one that's helped my arms grow and the hundreds of men and women I have trained over the past 30 plus years.

Now, my success isn't due to being genetically gifted, as it took me the better part of 11 years to get my arms up to those measurements.

Which is significant as it works and been been proven time and time again to work for the average man or woman trying to grow their arms without drugs.

It's my hope that these high intensity training protocols can help you as much as they helped me!

Click on my bio link to see the full video on my YouTube channel and thanks as always for taking the time to look at my work!!! Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#highintensitytraining #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #fitover40 #naturalbodybuildingvideos #armworkout #bicepsworkout #naturalbodybuildingtips #biceps #armtraining #highintensitytrainingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #barbellcurls

55 8

At the Lancaster Classic Day 2 Elimination Rounds Against European Champion, and World Record Holder Leo Pettersen @leo_barebow_archer

I don't talk much about it but I'm also a competitive barebow archer (surprise!) and last Saturday I had the honor of making it to Day 2 at the Lancaster Archery Classic in the Barebow Division, as I made the top 64 out of 267 competitors and had a chance to shoot with some of the greatest barebow shooters on the planet!

I didn't make it past Leo, but it was a real rush to be there and a huge thanks to my coach, Joe MyGlyn @prolinearchery for helping me get there.

Thanks as well to my good friend @sean_chan33 for all of his help from the very start, to my line buddy Aaron Shea for taking the shot and showing up to support!

My thanks as well to rob_kaufhold for putting on and promoting one of the best archery tournaments on earth!

Thanks also to to everyone who took the time to send a supporting word and I am looking forward to next year!!! #naturallyintense #barebow

#lancasterclassic #lancasterarcheryclassic2024 #lancasterarchery #archery #fitover40 #barebowrecurve #targetarchery

38 9

Dumbo, Brooklyn circa 2004

This shot was taken as part of the promotion for my Naturally Intense DVD and was about a year after my last bodybuilding competition.

It was a grueling photoshoot.

We started at about 10 am and finished around 4pm and I was completely spent, but the more we shot the sharper I looked, so we kept on going.

It's nice to look back from time to time and as tired as I was, we all had a blast!

My thanks to @stephanie_corne_artwork, @https://pulse.ly/itgnag2dec and @ftaz1 for taking the shots!!!

Thanks for watching and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #throwback #fifthavenuegym #5thavenuegym #drugfreebodybuilding #naturalbodybuildinglifestyle #gymlife #gymmotivation #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #bodybuilding #blackandwhite #instablackandwhite #bnw

223 12

Can You Build An Impressive Physique Training Only At Home?


I stopped training in commercial gyms as of March 2020 and have been training at home ever since.

Initially I was admittedly worried that I might lose some of my gains or not make as much progress, but that certainly wasn't the case.

I've consistently continued to improve with my high intensity workouts and muscles have no idea where they are training.

As long as the criteria of adequate intensity and overload are met, there will be an adaptive response and your muscles will get bigger and stronger.

So don't worry at all about where you train, focus instead of what will be the best way for you to always be training!

Thanks for watching and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

97 3

Kevin's Three Day Training Spilt!

For the past 33 years I have trained three times a week with Naturally Intense High Intensity Training workouts lasting 10, 15 to 20 minutes max.

It's a training split tried and testes not only in it's helping me realize my goal of becoming a successful natural bodybuilder, but it's also helped hundreds of men and women over the past three decades.

I have tested just about every possible training split imaginable and for this particular style of high intensity training, this particular grouping consistently yields fantastic results.

I hope it helps you as much as it's helped me over the years and thanks so much for taking the time to look at my work.

Keep training hard and Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#trainingsplit #3daytrainingsplit #threedaytrainingsplit #naturalbodybuilding #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuildingvideo #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #naturalbodybuildingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #bodybuilding #highintensitytraining #highintensitytrainingtips

147 26

405 Stiff Leg Deadlift for 7 Reps! High Intensity Training.

First leg workout of the year and already pushing it!

I haven't done a stiff leg deadlift over 315lbs for about 3 years at this point, and I did my last set with 315lbs and comfortably got to 10 reps and decided I had far too much gas left in the tank and that I should go up in weight.

So I did.

I figured I might get a solid 6 reps in, but I made it to 7 and I think I could have gone on to get a full 10 reps BUT that's when good judgement prevailed.

As a bodybuilder having not trained this heavy for so many years, the shock of this much weight would be more than enough to stimulate muscle growth, and doing more reps wouldn't yield any greater returns, only increase the likelihood of injury.

It's not about the numbers, it's about training to a point where you achieve your goal, and it's important to have a goal in mind as a bodybuilder based on increasing muscle mass rather than hitting a particular number.

Besides, if in my 20's I never did more than 405lbs on a stiff leg deadlift, it doesn't make any sense going heavier than when I am almost 50!

Could I deadlift more at this point?

Absolutely but just because you can doesn't mean you should!

So keep those weights in a good working range, keep it safe and as always Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#hometraining #homeworkout #homeworkout #roguerack #highintensitytraining #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #fitover40 #naturalbodybuildingvideos #backworkout #naturalbodybuildingtips #backtraining #highintensitytrainingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #fitoverforty #deadlift

71 20

Turning 50 in a few months...

Not much of a big deal for me as I still feel pretty much the same but I hope that my example helps show what can be done with a lifetime commitment to eating well and training consistently!

Thanks for coming along on the journey and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #healthylifestyle #fitover40 #drugfreebodybuilding #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #natty #fitness

242 41
Kevin Richardson
Kevin Richardsonhttps://www.naturallyintense.net
Featured everywhere from the Wall Street Journal to CBS News, celebrity Personal Trainer NYC and with over 2.6 million readers of his blog, Kevin Richardson is the creator of Naturally Intense High Intensity Training, one of the top lifetime drug free bodybuilders of his time, the first International Fitness & Nutrition Consultant for UNICEF, 2020 and 8 Time Winner of the Best of Manhattan Awards for Personal Training and a world recognized authority on high intensity training. Kevin has helped thousands, from celebrities to CEO's over the past 30 years achieve their fitness goals with his 10 minute high-intensity workouts done just three times a week in conjunction with his holistic nutrition approach. You can learn more about about his diet and training services at www.naturallyintense.net

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