With everything going on, we know a lot of people are jumping into training programs, which is awesome! To try to help out a little, we thought we would throw together the 5 key things to look for in a result based program. Keep in mind, these are concerning those of you looking for results out of your training. If you are in a situation where you are just looking to be a little more physically active due to all the screen time and change in circumstances, all the power to you and we definitely encourage the decision you are making! But, we know there are a lot of you out there missing the gym (we are also!) and are jumping into programs trying to get some results. So, this if for you! Hopefully it helps, and if not doesn’t help now, then hopefully it arms you with the tools necessary for when we are back in the gym so you can hit the ground running (or lifting)!
1- Individualised: I know what you’re all thinking – yeah, yeah, we know, based on what we want to achieve etc. we’ve heard it all before, but hear me out! For sure, you need to ensure the program is both appropriate for you and central to what you’re looking to do. In terms of what you’re looking to achieve, if you want to slab on some muscle, a progressive running program might not be optimal, and vice versa, so this is first port of call for a result based program and is likely the obvious one you’re all thinking. But, here’s the catch. Still within individualisation is the more ‘individual’ part of it all – is the program catered to you!? 15 squats will be too hard for some, too easy for others when the weight is a constant. What do I mean by that? Well, it’s easy enough when you have a barbell and can just change loads, but when the load is mostly constant (your bodyweight) we need to either tailor the reps a little more such as training in a certain proximity to failure, or we can increase the difficulty of the movement with things like pauses, slow eccentrics and all that fun stuff. It’s not quite as simple as do 15 squats, 15 push ups, and 10 lunges, that one size fits all approach is not going to cut it!
2- Progressive: after we know the program is individualised, we also need to acknowledge individualisation is a moving target! 3 sets of 12-15 squats could be right where it’s at in the first week of your program. But after doing that for a few weeks, it could very well be nowhere near enough! So, we need to look for a program that increases either intensity or the amount of work you are doing over time. Side note, this is also very true for things like running programs. If you’re doing the same distance in the same time for 6-weeks, after a while, that is no longer as challenging as it once was. This means time to increase one of the variables, either increase the distance or reduce the time you allow yourself to complete that distance. The great thing about the body is that it adapts super well. But, understanding this adaptation is key to progressing on a nice trajectory and as the title gave away – getting results!
3- Intensity: Having a progressive program leads nicely to this point. As much as exercise is fantastic and enjoyable, it should be somewhat challenging if you’re looking for results and improvement! We spoke about progressing over time, but for that to apply at all, we need to be pushing the ticket a little! It’s pretty easy to do a home workout where you just fluff about a lot (and in a lot of ways, that’s definitely better than nothing, and we aren’t saying that’s a bad thing at all!). But, here we’re talking about what to look for in a program that will get RESULTS and let’s put it this way… nobody ever got accidentally jacked!
4- Balanced: Nobody wants to be an upside-down triangle, so we need to make sure the program is balanced. If you’ve got 4 chest days a week and one leg day a year, you’re probably missing the ball a little. We also need to make sure we are adding in some of that cardio stuff or just focusing on a healthy lifestyle like everyone is always going on about being good for you (yes, we are those people going on about being healthy, wouldn’t be doing our job if we weren’t!).
5- ADHERENCE: If you don’t actually do the program, none of these points matter! So, making sure the program is something you are able to fit in with your schedule, something you enjoy, and doesn’t feel like an absolute chore is pretty important!
Try putting all five of things into practice, and let us know how you go. If you need more assistance or looking for some guidance and direction, get in touch with our team. Want to hear PPT coaches Mitch and Bandoll talk more on this topic? Click here