The 12 Keys To Success In Fitness
After many years in the fitness industry, I've narrowed it down to 12 Keys To Success In Fitness. So if you're ready, here they are!
1. TIME AND EFFICIENCY
This is the old quality over quantity rule. I'm sure you've all seen the lazy bench presser who does a set, waits 10 minutes, does another, waits 10 more minutes, etc. He then tells people that he works out for 3 hours a day when in fact he's probably doing about 30 minutes of work. He's just taking 3 hours to get it done. Scientifc studies have shown that the best result-producing workouts are the ones that get the most work done in the least time. Not only that but after about 45 minutes or so, cortisol levels start to rise. Definitely not the state you want to be in for optimum resuts. So remember, keep those workouts short and sweet!
2. EXERCISE SELECTION
The most effective exercise are hard! I won't lie about that. But they bring the results. You just have to ask yourself what's more important to you. Comfort or results? Generally most exercise can be classified under two major categories. SIngle Joint and Multi Joint. The Mulit Joint ones where you train numerous muscles with one movement are far superior to the ones where you train only one. It's imperative to keep this in mind when designing a workout.
3. SET / REP / TIME PATTERN
It's possible to do two workouts with identical exercises, but have drastically different results by manipuating these variables. A workout with heavy weights and long rests between sets is quite different from a quick workout with rests of only 20 seconds betweeb exercises. For my money, I'll usually pick the faster workouts. However nothing is written in stone. It' may be advisable for someone to do slower workouts depending on goals, injuries, personality type, etc. But regardless of which method you use, one cannot deny the importance of sets, reps, and time patterns.
4. PROPER WEIGHT
You've heard of the expression "Live within your means". Same thing applies to working out. Only lift what you can in proper form. Keep your ego in check and do what you can handle. I've seen some truly insane things over the years due to out of control egos. the worst offender I ever saw was a bench presser who put a large piece of foam on his chest. He then proceeded to take a massive barbell, accelerate it, and ram it off his chest just so he could use a heavy weight!
In an ideal world, everything will come along nicely at the same rate and with no injuries or imbalances. However I'm sure you'll all agree that this is not an ideal world. Things come up and they must be addressed. If you have a rotator cuff injury, your goal should be to get it better. Of course you still want to keep everything else going, but extra attention must be given to that area. Ignoring a problem will not make it go away!
Scheduled layoffs are actually very important. This of course assumes that you've been training regularly for a good number of weeks. It varies, but generally after 12 weeks or so, that's a good time to take a few days or a week off. Often you come back stronger after having that break!
7. POWER OF THE MIND
Proper focus is essential. Keep your head in the game. Working out is not the time for daydreaming. Not only will you be able to concentrate better on the exercise and get better results. But you'll also help prevent injury. Horsing around and not focusing are usually when injuries happen!
The best workout will be useless without proper nutritional support. You've got to get those nutrients and regardless of some of the BS out there, you need ALL the macros. Proteins, Carbs, and Fats. Never mind these idiots who will tell you to cut entire macros from your diet. You need them all. I heard a schoolteacher explain it best.
Protein is to build strong bones and muscles.
Carbohydrates are to give you energy to exercise and play.
Fats are for your brain to work properly so you can do well in school.
Simple, but true!
This one should be obvious, but it has to be said anyway. You won't be able to recover from those workouts very well if you're getting 4 or 5 hours of sleep a night. You'd better be getting a bare minimum of 6 or 6 and a half hours.
10. GOAL SETTING
You can't go anywhere if you don't know where you're going. Often just having simple short term goals is best. Lose 10 lbs, decrease my time in the 100 metre dash, etc. Over time, these will add up to big accomplishments. Of course, you may also have goals like being able to walk around pain free or help alleviate back pain. In any case, you must have a goal in your mind and when you workout and even during your off times, think about it even if it's only on a subconscious level.
11. INSTINCTIVE TRAINING
One of the biggest proponents of Instinctive Training was Steve Reeves. Having a set workout is great but you must always be open to adaptation. What if your program calls for an intense HIIT workout and you just don't have the energy for it. Either you or your trainer shoud be able to adjust accordingly. As Bruce Lee used to say "Be like water, my friend". Flowing water stays fresh and vibrant. Put water into a glass and keep it on your kitchen counter for a couple of weeks and watch what happens to it!
12. Limited Programs
More is not always better. I know of a trainer who routinely has people doing over 20 or even 30 different exercises in a workout. Think about it. Just when you're getting into the groove of an exercise, it's time to move onto something else. How are you supposed to ever get good at anything when you never do the same thing twice? Limited programs involve only a handful of exercises done multiple times. Sometimes only two or three exercises! Believe me, it works. You develop a very strong mind to muscle connection and the pump you experience is out of this world!
So there you have it. 12 Keys To Success In Fitness. For more information about fitness, personal training (in-home or online) click here