Body Transformation Tip – Patience is a Virtue!

One of the most common reasons people fail when it comes to transforming their bodies is impatience.   They don’t stick to the plan long enough to see results and they either get discouraged and quit altogether or they jump to the next fad diet or latest exercise trend hoping for magic to happen overnight.   The more you jump around from plan to plan, the less likely you are to achieve the great changes you are hoping for.

There are a number of ways to workout and achieve results.  Some approaches I would definitely rank better than others but with overall health and fitness one of the primary determining factors of success is consistent execution for a LONG period of time.

I tell everyone I coach to expect 6-8 weeks of executing the training and nutrition plans before really seeing anything.  Even though there may not be many visible changes in that first 6-8 weeks of execution it is setting the foundation for all the great changes to come.  Those that can commit and get over that hump will start to really be rewarded by weeks 12 and beyond if they keep executing in and out of the gym.

We are a society of instant gratification.  People want results overnight but physiology just doesn’t work that way.  I can appreciate the mental and emotional challenge of working hard for weeks yet not see much happening and I know the temptation is great to jump ship but I promise you perseverance and patience will be rewarded!



  1. Thanks Jeff! Bodybuilding does involve patience and dedication. I think I am only just working this out now. Setting goals and milestone markers help me. I workout alone in my garage with a very basic weight set. I lift MAX OT style three days a week and workout like clockwork along with supplementation and diet. I am seeing the changes for certain.

  2. Hi there Jeff,

    I am a Max OT trainer too. I recently have read up on Frank Zane as well as watched his video clips. In these he has referred to the need for isolating exercises for developing muscle groups. I have also seen him say he would not train heavy again if he had his time over.

    I guess when a veteran of the sport says this stuff, it can make you wonder…

    Apparently Frank has suffered major shoulder issues as a result of heavy weights in his younger years.


    • I think heavy, basic lifts are necessary to maximize drug free muscle development. I also feel basic compound lifts are more effective than isolation workouts. People have different opinions and that’s OK.

  3. Thanks Jeff. I will stay with Max OT and continue to execute then.

    I was just wondering… Did you sustain injuries at all? That is one thing that concerns me about the heavy weights.

    I try and do two warm up sets before hitting it. First warm up at 50% and then second warm up at 75-80% of my current lifts (within the 4-6 rep range).

    Is this good enough?


    • I never had any major injuries to speak of. Some strains and pulls here and there but if you are training 100% no matter what method I think you will be susceptible to some degree.

      Here’s a link on the warm-up protocol:

      • Thanks Jeff!

        I am glad to read that warm up protocol. I have have not been performing my warm ups anything like that. I have only ever done about two sets for warm ups. With arms, I have done 1 set of pull ups and then one set at about 85% of my muscle building sets.

        Looks like I need to revisit this.


  4. Hello Jeff,

    I follow MAX OT and diet very closely.

    My training is completed at home with a very basic set of weights.

    My progress is coming along well, however my chest is growing very fast. Currently I am working 2 sets of incline bench presses and 3 sets of flat bench presses. I am considering just going to 3-4 sets of flat bench presses in order to slow the chest growth a little and focus more on the lower chest.

    While my arms are growing, they still lag a little compared to the rest of my upper body and need about another inch in order to obtain the balance.

    Is it advisable to cut back on chest work a little?

    I am really starting to do hack squats and deadlifts now too.

    Also, my current routine is 3 days and the workouts take 1 hour. I am considering going to 4 days so the workouts can get down to 40 minutes or less. Is this preferable?

    I am training back and biceps together and also training triceps and shoulders together so I can avoid over training. I think if I go 4 days, then I cannot train like I have been (with grouping body parts).

    I would appreciate your thoughts and advice.


    • I am generally not in favor of backing off certain body parts in an attempt for others to catch up because usually any discrepancies are negligible and balance out over time with the continual execution of basic compound lifts.

      The benefit of spreading the workout over 4 or 5 days is each workout is shorter. Here’s a link to a sample 4 day Max-OT routine:

      • Hello again Jeff,

        So you feel that I should stay the course and keep Max OT-ing as usual? Ok, I understand and will do.

        I have a very basic weight set at home (two dumbbells and one ez barbell with a small bench), so my range of exercises are limited. With chest and shoulders, I have to resort to 1-arm presses and bench presses due to no training buddy and lack of equipment. I still lift heavy and keep to the Max OT set and rep ranges. I am making very good gains even though I have these limitations. The ez bar was a huge addition and allows me to do more variety of compound exercises.

        I feel that I may stick with the three day routine at the moment. I saw you say that these are just as good?
        My routine is as follows;

        Biceps and Back
        Triceps and Chest
        Shoulders and Legs

        With Biceps and Triceps, would you settle with 4 or 5 sets based on the above routine? I saw some of your routines had 4 sets at times and I am now confused.

        I want to get my workouts down to 45 minutes if possible.


        • As I mentioned in a previous post – There really isn’t “right” or “wrong” as long as you are executing the basic Max-OT principles and it looks like you are doing that with the equipment you have available to you.

  5. I just saw that you don’t recommend working shoulders and legs together. I am finding it really hard to group body parts when I have limited equipment to workout with and no training buddy.

    Can you check my current routine and see if I am doing ok?

    Monday (Biceps and Back)
    Bicep Curls (Ez Bar) 3 Sets/4-6 Reps
    Hammer Curls 2 Sets/4-6 Reps
    1-arm rows 4 Sets/4-6 Reps

    Wednesday (Triceps and Chest)
    1-arm skull crushers 3 Sets/4-6 Reps
    Dumbbell kickbacks 2 Sets/4-6 Reps
    Flat Bench Press 3 Sets/4-6 Reps
    Incline Bench Press 2 Sets/4-6 Reps

    Friday (Shoulders and Legs)
    Upright Rows 3 Sets/4-6 Reps
    1-arm presses 2 Sets/4-6 Reps
    Hack Squats 4 Sets/4-6 Reps
    Dead Lifts 4 Sets/4-6 Reps

    Sorry for the second post on this. I read up on your suggested routines and now wonder if I am doing things wrong?

    As I mentioned, I have a very basic set of weights, no weight racks or training buddy. I don’t even have a leg press to work calves with. I feel that I am doing Max OT the best I can with what I have, but am always keen for any direction from a Pro.

    Thanks again for your help and time.

    • There really isn’t “right” or “wrong” as long as you are executing the basic Max-OT principles and it looks like you are doing that with the equipment you have available to you.

  6. Great blog! I recently have made a caloric deficit of about 600 calories to shed stubborn fat on my lower abs, and love handles. I follow your workouts as well as the cardio routine, and I see a lot of gains in my chest, legs, and arms. Currently eating about 1650 calories a day, all vegetables, lean meat, fruit, and healthy carbs. I’m 5’11, 23 yo, and at 11 percent. I went from 174 (19 percent body fat) to currently, 158 pounds (11 percent body fat) I keep losing weight, I just want to make sure I am not losing any muscle. I have only visible my middle abs, ribs, and obliques. I have no top abs or lower abs yet. I fear i may be losing muscle and that at 158 I might be too skinny. I do eat about 170-190 grams of protein in a day though. Should i continue with the caloric deficit? Should I cut more calories to lose stubborn fat? At what point does the body lose muscle? Any feedback would be much appreciated, Thanks!

    • In general you want to follow progressive caloric skims to get leaner. And you need to do this while maintaining smart nutrient ratios and smart selection and timing. You also need to keep training with the Max-OT principles and Max-OT style cardio. All of those facets executed correctly will help keep any muscle loss to a minimum while emphasizing maximum fat loss.

  7. avatar
    Paul Smith

    Needed this right now Jeff, my motivaiton has been low due to some unforseen family problems but after reading your blog i’m looking forward to hitting the gym again!


    Paul Smith

  8. avatar
    Amjad Dokhkan

    Dear Jeff ,

    I noticed that when you talked about cardio you specified only 16 minutes on very high intensity . Do you think that performing cardio for a longer period will put you in a risk of losing muscle or what ? Best regards

    • Yes. Short duration, high intensity cardio has many benefits and one of them is it helps to avoid any potential negative impact to the muscle building process compared to long duration cardio.

  9. Jeff, i was wondering about the necessity of switching up the workout routines, such as after the week off every 8 to 10 weeks, would you recommend sticking with the previous sets/reps/exercises/order, or switch any of these things up?

    • I think changing the workout has more to do with personal preference and mental freshness than physiology. If you want a change to freshen things up then after the week off is a good time to do that. If you have a routine you really like I don’t think it is necessary to switch.

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