The Webster dictionary defines principle as a comprehensive and fundamental law. I want to talk about a resistance training principle that most gyms goers just simply ignore and even sometime are not even aware of.
It is true that most people who exercise go to the gym as a goal in itself. Going to the gym is the end goal. The sad fact is going to the gym will not do anything to your physique if you don't apply the fundamentals of training. The club is just a tool to help you achieve your goals. An axe is a great tool but the wood doesn't get chopped by itself.
If you visit any gym across America you will always find somebody that goes there just to be there. Most often it is that person that is throwing a light set of weights around and his/her attention is completely on something else. They usually exercise with a weight that is so light that they could do it in their sleep. Their form is always questionable at best. They try to rush through their sets so they can go back to the socializing, forgetting completely the main reason why they are at the gym.
Understand that I have nothing against socializing, the gym is a great place to socialize but my point is. Don't forget the main reason why you came to the gym. If it is to improve your physique, you need to put a priority and doing the things that are going to help you reach that goal.
Resistance training when done properly will improve your metabolism. But in order to have consistent improvements you need to consistently challenge your muscles.
Whatever you put your body through it will rise to the occasion and adapt to the stimulus. So if you keep doing the same, you body adapts very quickly and your progress will screech to a halt.
Every time you train with resistance and you are not experiencing a positive physical challenge, you are not going to see any progress in the long run. This is usually why people experience the dreaded plateau.
The one principle of resistance training that most people forget about is Progressive Loading. Progressive loading means that your muscles are always being challenged. It does not means that you have to push heavier and heavier load at each and every workout. It means always forcing you muscles to adapt. This can be accomplished with all kind of weights.
You can accomplish progressive loading by varying: load (free weights), types of exercises, time under tension and frequency. You may do 10 reps of biceps curls, every single workout with 20 pounds. At first this might be challenging but, at one point, you are going to be able to do the same 10 reps at 20 pounds without any effort. With everything being equal, your progress usually is correlated to the challenge.
Keep your workouts challenging and your results will follow. The key to an effective resistance training program is a consistent and progressive challenge.
Article by Charles Blain. Charles is the owner of FitMind personal training (www.thefitmind.com, no longer working) and he is a certified personal fitness trainer. He also exposes the shocking and sometimes frightening truth behind the weight loss and nutritional supplement industries.
- Strength training programs
- Testing for strength and power
- Strength Training Equipment
- Resistance training exercises