I often get asked frequently about getting RESULTS and the best way to get there. After all, that’s what every person is after right? Results-oriented training programs should be the backbone of any person’s overall program that is offering training services to athletes and/or clients.
With this being in mind, there is NO perfect program. Every training program has it’s minor (or major) flaws, but if you follow some simple and basic principles, you will still reap the benefits you seek. No matter you’re looking to get stronger, get faster, lose some body fat, or simply get in better shape and feel better, you MUST adhere to these steps to ensure the work you’re putting in will pay off in the end!
#1 Record EVERYTHING: Everything you do inside and outside of the gym will affect the results you are after. Obviously, right? Yet people still do not understand why sleeping only 4 hours the night before a training session left them feeling like crap, or having a couple beers per night over the course of a week or 2 still had them only losing 1-2 pounds instead of what they really should have been. I don’t mean you have to write down everything you do in a given day with extreme detail, but if you’re serious enough about reaching your goals (and I know you are if you’re reading this) then at least write down your workout you did for the day (with weight used, duration, etc) , how you felt, how much you slept the night before, approximate food intake for the day. Doing this will take some practice but over time it will develop into a necessary habit. If you can record it, you can improve it.
#2 Be Consistent! Don’t expect full results if you’re giving half-ass effort to a training program. If you skip a workout here and there, they will lead to two missed workouts in a week, then three.. It’s a big snowball effect and I’ve seen it happen time and time again. Stick to the plan, be consistent and you won’t be disappointed. I’ve found the best strategy for this is finding a small group of people to train with. This instills motivation, accountability, and a constant environment that breeds success. If you train alone, it makes it much harder to tell yourself “I’ll go tomorrow” when in reality you probably won’t. This is why I’m such a big proponent of group training.
#3 Every Rep Counts! This almost falls in line with the above, but if you’re half-assing the entire workout from start to finish, you may as well just pack up and go home. Every single rep, including warm ups should be 100% laser focused. Sloppy repetitions in the warm up instills bad motor patterns and technique that carry over to any activity you perform in the actual workout itself. Again, once you set foot in the gym or wherever you train, you should be there for business. It should NOT be a social hour to discuss the latest trends and news. It should be a time to let go of whatever is bothering you and ATTACK that workout like it’s your last. Seriously.. I want you to be honest with this one. You either have gotten better, or you’ve taken a step backwards. Do not waste ONE SINGLE effort! How many of us can say they left it all out every single time you trained? If more people could say YES to that answer, they would be much happier with their results.
#4 You Can’t Out-Train a Shitty Diet! I got this tip from one of the top strength coaches in the world, Jason Ferruggia of Renegade Training Systems. It makes total sense, doesn’t it? Why put in all the hard work that comes with training, to squash that by eating like complete shit? You are what you eat (Seriously! But go ahead and insert some dirty joke here if you feel the need!) Do you want to be fueled by pizza, beer, chips, and candy? Or do you want to be fueled by foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat, and feel better? Keeping it very simple, but stick to natural-based foods i.e. something that can be killed or grown (meats, nuts, vegetables, fruits, some grains, some dairy, etc) Don’t over-think it. If you have more questions specifically on nutrition, I will address that in a future post.I understand we’re all HUMAN, but there has to come a time when you stop making excuses and justifying your actions that led to YOU not losing the weight or getting stronger, faster, etc..
#5 Pick a program and STICK TO IT! It’s the funniest thing. There’s so much information out there now available to the public that it can get extremely confusing. One week someone will find some great, “innovative” training program and give it a whirl, then they’ll talk to a friend and hear about some other program and try that, etc and continue this trend for weeks and wonder WHY they are making ZERO progress. Your body needs time to ADAPT to a given stimulus; if you keep throwing in new variables and keep changing you’ll just be spinning your wheels. Find a trainer, coach, or decent program that suits YOU and stick to it for at least 12 weeks. Yes, 12 weeks. You need to give it some time to work it’s course! None of this short term 4 week stuff. If we were more concerned with the long-term success rather than short, quick fixes, we’d all be better off.
After all, you want this to be a lifestyle right?
Keep up the great work and remember that if you stick to these 5 basic principles, you WILL get results regardless of how “good” or “bad” a given training program is (to some extent, but we’ll discuss this later!)