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How to Choose the Right Workout Program

Going for a runWant to lose weight or build muscle? Maybe you want to get stronger and/or faster for your sport? Whatever your goals are, choosing the right workout program can be quite the task. There’s an infinite amount of workout programs out there written by personal trainers, coaches, and the average person alike, so where do you start?

 

Let me start by saying this “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.” Whatever your training objective is, there are a million ways to do it, you just have to find the right one. Sure some methods are better than others, but in reality the best training program is the one you’ll stick with and the one that won’t injure you. Follow the steps below and start your new workout program today!

 

  • Set goals.
    • This is pretty self-explanatory. The first step is to figure out where you’re going first!
  • Workout vs. Training
    • Are you working out just to feel sore and get your sweat on, or are you training for something? Getting your ass whooped doesn’t always mean results.
    • Training is planned and has purpose. Not all workouts are created equal!
  • Frequency
    • How many days a week can you realistically workout? Choose a workout that fits your schedule because different training protocols require different time commitments. The best workouts require as little as 3x/ week or as much as 5-7x/ week. Be realistic!
  • Equipment/ Facilities
    • Will you be working out at a gym, a park, or from home? Some workouts require dumbbells, barbells, machines, etc so choose a workout that reflects what is available to you.
    • Make sure it’s affordable. If you’re barely scraping by to make ends meet choose a gym or training program you can afford.
  • Difficulty/ Experience Level
    • The hardest workout isn’t always the best one, choose the one that represents your experience level. If you’re a beginner, don’t use the program the pro uses now, choose the program she/he did when they first started out.
  • Contraindications
    • Do you have any health issues that may prevent you from following a certain training program? If there’s a workout you like but have an injury that may prevent you from following it, ask an expert how you can work around it or if there are any substitutes.
  • Consistency
    • Stick with the program for at least 6-12 weeks. Unless you’re just starting results aren’t instantaneous. The best training programs have planned progressions and recovery periods and have built in peak periods.
  • START NOW!!!
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4 Benefits of Real Strength Training for Women

Women can rock one arm push ups too!
Women can rock one arm push ups too!

Get “Toned”

Have you ever heard that lifting light weight for lots of reps is the key to getting toned? Yea, that’s bullshit that sells really well and looks great on ads. When you lift heavy you not only build lean tissue, but you add definition and shape to the muscles you have under your extra layer of passion padding.

Builds Great (insert chosen body part here)

If you don’t already have the body you want, strength training will help you sculpt/ build the body you want. Want a perkier or bigger butt? Do some squats (weighted). Don’t like back fat or bra fat? Do some bent-over rows. Want those nice shoulder lines and need to get rid of the arm jiggle? Do a bunch of chest presses. Oh and no you won’t lose your boobs.

Strength Training Burns Fat

No I’m not talking about puny 5 or 10 lbs dumbbells (unless of course you have an injury), I’m talking about trying to push your body to lift a weight that is uncomfortable for you. Squat, deadlift, press, pull ups… Do something along these lines and your body will thank me. These exercises won’t make you look like a dude, it’ll help you build nice lean muscle. As mentioned above, lean muscle burns fat!

Confidence

There’s confidence in knowing that you’ve put it in more work than the person beside you.  When you’re mentally strong enough to push your body further and longer you know you can just handle shit. You’ve put your work in and no one can take that away from you. Physically, you don’t need people to carry or hold things for you, you can do it yourself. As Darwin says, it’s a matter of “survival of the fittest.”

 

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5 Things Fit People Do Differently

Fit People Have Defined Goal

Fit people know almost exactly what they want. The average person may say “I want a better body,” whereas an individual with a fit body will say “I want my butt to look like this, my stomach to like like that, and my legs to be shaped like this.” Having defined goals gives you a definite destination, so picture in your head exactly what you want your body to look like.

 

Fit People Have a Plan

Fit people lay out some sort of a game plan with regards to their workouts and nutrition. A fit person will usually have a defined workout time and have at least a rough idea as to what they’re going to eat during the week. When it comes to getting their workouts in, they don’t fly by the edges of their seat.

Fit People Focus on What They Can Control

Shit happens in life and it’s inevitable. The difference is that fit people don’t let this get in the way of their lifestyle. They understand life goes on and they revert back to their active and healthy ways.

Fit People Don’t Let Others Dictate Their Goals

More often than not, the biggest detractors are your friends and your family. Your friends and family will almost always be the first to tell you to skip your workout, have a slice of pizza, or have an extra glass of wine. The problem here is that your goals aren’t their goals so they don’t realize how much effort it takes to actually get fit and be fit. Fit people don’t let the negativity of their friends and family get in the way of their gym time and healthy eating habits.

Fit People See Fitness as a Lifestyle

Working out, eating healthy, taking care of your body, it’s a lifestyle. Just like overweight people unconsciously eat junk food and are sedentary, a fit person will hit up a workout or eat healthy as if it’s just another part of their day.

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4 Reasons Your Body Hasn’t Changed Yet

Post Training

Consistency

You are either trying to change your body or you’re not; it isn’t something that can be done part time. Most people make the mistake of starting a new fitness regimen for a few weeks and stopping only start up again another few weeks later. Others eat healthy for a few days, eat something unhealthy, then go back to eating healthy again. You gotta stay consistent! Especially for the first 3 weeks! In my experience, you’ve gotta keep at it for at least 3 weeks to see some change.

Commitment

Like I said above, you’re either in or you’re out. Commit to following your training program and your nutrition plan at least 80% of the time if you want your body to change. The chart I created below allows you to see how many workouts you’re missing and roughly how many bad meals you’re having each month. If you want to change your body today, commit yourself to it and stick it.

 

Prescription Frequency/ Week Freq/ Month 80 % 60%
Exercise 4 workouts per week 16 workouts per month 12 workouts 9 workouts
Nutrition: 5 Meals per day 35 meals per week 140 meals/ mth 112 healthy meals 84 healthy meals

 

Giving Up Easily

Shit happens in life and you can’t avoid it .There’s nothing wrong with that, but you’ve gotta pick your ass up and stick to the plan. Focus on what you can control  (what to eat, how to workout, etc) but don’t dwell on the success of your peers. This will help you keep going when times are rough

Wrong Training Program and Nutrition

Find the training and nutrition program that is right for you. There are a million training and nutrition programs and each one has it’s pros and cons so do your research and do what’s best for you. If you have no clue what’s best for you, seek the help of a qualified and experienced professional!