The “Toughen Up” pill…


The “toughen up pill” is that simple reminder that in order to get what you want you must put the hard yards in, it doesn’t really matter the area of your life you look at, if you want something, you have to work hard for it.

Business, physicality, sports, personal development, etc… In here we will discuss the “toughen up pill” principle relate to physicality, health and longevity profile aspects but the strategy can be applied for any aspect of your life.

Achieving goals and the right time to introduce the “toughen up pill”:

First step would be finding the right role model to ask the questions you might have or to help you develop a strategy (plan) to get there, knowing that you will be pushed and you will need to get out of your comfort zone are characteristics of the learning curve process.


Search for people that did it before, did it successfully; over and over again and are still winning on the area that you want to improve!

For an example;

Nutritionist that is overweight and unhealthy or have eating disorders – No go!

Exercise expert that don’t really work with clients on the weekly basis or is weak and unhealthy – No go!


Nutritionist that transform lives on the weekly basis, lives a healthy lifestyle and will push you to get the results you want – Yes go!

Exercise expert that help many individuals to achieve their goals, is strong and has the experience in dealing with different humans, lives and enjoy himself the benefits of proper exercise – Yes go!


Not so hard to separate a good fit, right? More often if you are not where you want to be, the two steps are not in place;

  • Role model
  • Strategy

But if you are confident you made these choices carefully you might need the “toughen up pill” slap in the face, simply because if you have the right guidance and strategy and still not working, it’s on you…


If you are not listening or following the strategy you will have to harden up and try again with a different intent or the required intensity. Getting out of your comfort zone, being pushed, being challenged to get better, that’s what a good coach will do for you, it won’t settle down for less than what you want to achieve. I personally have a few experiences with clients over my 20 years career with more than 40.000 workouts supervised… that i have to offer the “toughen up pill” for individuals and the ones that decide to take it; achieved dramatic transformation and now are living in a healthy and strong body. The ones the decided not to take the “toughen up pill” could only realise they didn’t had what it takes to achieve what they were set to achieve and adjusting their goals was a must until they became capable to work harder, being uncomfortable more often, being pushed and challenged. Make no mistake everyone has their own time and can be built into the person that is capable of taking the “toughen up pill”, in the end of the day is a matter of: how bad do you want it??? Some individuals will take longer to desire their goals hard enough and they can be built into it, becoming that person that can toughen up at some stage, i would introduce the strategy of changing their shoulds for a musts and once they understand this concept they will be ready to toughen up.

If you change your shoulds for musts, you will start to see magic happening in your life.

Cut the excuse out, it is all on you!!

Again,  1st find the role model (professional or high achiever that can guide you and has done it before, for himself and for others with high success rate all round)

2nd Have a plan, a strategy that worked before or makes sense.



If you got these 3 steps in place now comes down to execution and consistency, measuring and tracking your progression, because if you don’t measure and track you don’t know where you are going.

If it is not working, change!

How many times you must change? Until you get it right.

Is OK if you decide to settle down for less than what you wanted if you are happy with that decision, but believing that not doing what it takes eventually will get there regardless is a lie and insane thinking.

If you decide to take the “toughen up pill” the one thing i can promise you, you won’t regret it! Simply because there is no down side to it, the worst case scenario is: you will be stronger from a lesson that you needed to face.

Adjust your course and keep going.



Marcelo Mesquita

Director – Intense Health Clinics




Marcelo is the co-founder and Director of Exercise Physiology at Intense Health, Perth's #1 Private Strength Training and Nutrition Clinics.


Marcelo is the co-founder and Director of Exercise Physiology at Intense Health, Perth's #1 Private Strength Training and Nutrition Clinics.