Coach Leo Frincu with his star pupil UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey.
Coach Leo Frincu with his star pupil UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey.
A lot of athletes are struggling with finding the right training regimen. Most of them seem to be torn between their wants and their needs.

In our day-to-day life, we need with our conscious but want with our subconscious.

For example, you need to lose weight, but instead you want a slice of cake. You need to save money but you want a new pair of shoes. You need to do the right thing but you want to give into your cravings.

It goes the same with every aspect of your life, including your training regimen.

You might start a training program conscious about what you need, about your goals, however, without even knowing, you’ll start pursuing according to your wants. For example: When you start an exercise, you consciously know that you need to maintain certain intensity and a perfect form; however, before you know it, you slowly start to compromise both.

Is that a conscious choice? Since it’s you who does it, it’s only valid to call it personal choice, even if you’re not aware of it. We start an exercise with a conscious goal in mind when suddenly we subconsciously “choose” to compromise it. Who, if not us, is responsible for that choice? How many times are you going to blame “exhaustion” or “fatigue” for your failure to successfully complete a task?

When are athletes going to start taking responsibility, learn and grow? Most people are aware of their needs but not aware of their subconscious wants. Starting with high-level athletes to the lower end, they all make the same mistakes.

Believe it or not, most athletes have the wrong training philosophy. In training, you need to maintain a great form where most of these athletes just want to get over it. When you need a break, you just want to get started with your next exercise.

You need with your rational but you’ll perform with your low self-esteem. You consciously want to win your fight but subconsciously think you don’t deserve it. Does this sound familiar?

What do many athletes do when they fail to perform? They get emotional. By getting angry, you are “punishing” yourself for failing to complete that particular task. When that happens, you subconsciously validate your poor performance. You trade rationale performance for emotional compromise. Your emotions are your payment and the currency in the “losing” market.

You don’t need that, you want that.

What do most athletes do when they lose a fight? They’re going back to the gym and train even harder. However, some of them call that punishment, when working hard is what makes one feel good about their self. Since when does “punishment” feel good? It looks very hypocritical if you ask me.

Another example: How many people know what they need to do in order to lose weight, to make more money or get into healthier relationships? Everyone knows what they need to do, they just don’t know why they won’t do it.

In my business, often people are hiring me for what they need and end up firing me for failing to provide them with what they want. Your needs get you through the door but your wants get you out. Your conscious and rationale is what you need, but your subconscious/emotional is what gets you in trouble.

This is happening because most people don’t have the necessary tools required to bring their subconscious to their conscious. Most people perform only at 40% of their highest potential because their lack of self-awareness.

In MMA and pretty much in every aspect of your performance, you are walking a fine line between productive and counter-productive. You are making constant choices between your needs and your wants.

Stop separating your mind from your body and your needs from your wants, and start paying more attention to what you need versus what you get.

leo-frincuLeo Frincu came to the United States from Communist Romania with $10, a back pack and four words of English. Now, he’s a businessman, renowned trainer and mentor for UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey. Among his many athletic accomplishments, Leo is a six-time Romanian wrestling champion, four-time European champion and was also trainer and coach for the 2003 U.S. Olympic Wrestling Team. Leo is the author of a new book, “Choosing Freedom,” which details the steps he took to leave the oppressive Romanian society through wrestling and how his experiences have helped him in the United States – going from a bus boy to successful entrepreneur. You can learn more about Leo Frincu on his website Also, follow Leo on Twitter @leofrincu and “LIKE” his page on Facebook.

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