can't do itThe two most hated words of trainers and coaches every where are the word’s: I can’t. I know every time I was presented with something very challenging, especially in the beginning as much as I tried my hardest not to utter those two negative words they often did slipped out of my mouth before I could catch myself. Chris Powell & his wife Heidi as well as my local trainer Matt Franco would be pretty frustrated when I would tell them I can’t do it. These are some things I learned about saying “I can’t!”

1) Don’t say you can’t do something unless you try it first. Sometimes I would defeat myself mentally before I even gave it a shot. Give it your best try and see what happens. You may surprise yourself! Most trainers will not as you to do something you can’t physically do but  they want to challenge you. The challenges change your body and empowers your mind.

2) What I can’t usually truly means is: I’m scared. It is SO ok to be scared. I know my trainers would have been way more receptive to me telling them that the truth was that I had fear and anxiety and was way out of my comfort zone. In fact once I started owning up to being afraid they found ways to coach me through it and help me face my fears. One of my biggest fears was box jumps. In fact I refused to do them for a really long time. I did box step up’s instead. One day another trainer of mine in Arizona Aj Richards just would not let me get out of it. He knew I could do it. I told him I was terrified of the tripping on the box. So,  he made a stack of weights for me the same height as the box and said “ok, now try it, you can’t trip on these.” I was still afraid but I did it, and was amazed I could actually do it!  It was a huge victory and I was so glad me helped me face my fears.

3) Sometimes you really can’t do it. There were things that no matter how hard I tried I just wasn’t able to do what was asked of me. I wasn’t at the fitness or strength level to complete the task. However, I never say I can’t do it anymore. I say I am not able to do it YET, but I will keep training until I can. Changing your mindset really will change your health and your body.






  1. Pat Smith says

    Thank you so much for this post. This is so true! I was at the gym the other day and my grandson went with me. He is 18 years old and was born with a disease called arthrogryposis which means there is no muscle in his arms just skin draped over bone but I have never heard him say I can’t. He always finds a way to do whatever he sets out to do. Anyway, I was on the treadmill and he said to me “Nana, you can go faster than that and I looked at him and said no I can’t. He said just try so I did and found out I could go a lot faster and have a higher incline than I thought possible. As you said it was fear that kept me from going faster and I had totally convinced myself that I was at my limit.LOL Then he proceeded to tell me to try the roman chair and I again I said I can’t do that. He took me over to it and said get up and at least do one. If I can do it, you can do it so I did and guess what, I was able to do 10 before I finally came down. I learned a valuable lesson that day from my grandson and by the way I now call him mini Chris.LOL Thank you so much for sharing this!

  2. says

    Hi Jacqui! Just watched you on Extreme MakeOver…congratulations! You’ve done so well!!! I am so pleased you have realized the truth behind I can’t! It is also important to remember the times when you said ” I can’t “, and did it anyway – realizing that is almost takes more effort to stay stuck there than to go through with the challenge! Your bike ride with Chris in Ireland was the perfect example – was so proud that you pushed past it and finished magnificently.
    Thanks for the blog and keep writing.. we all have our challenges and seeing such as success is incredibly inspiring!

  3. says

    My trainer says “your brain is weaker than your body” and he is right. I’ve found that working training that voice in my head to say “I can” rather than “I can’t” has given me a more significant improvement in my fitness than any exercise or workout possibly could’ve before.

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