Entry by Antony Nyman Personal Trainer and co-founder of Antics Fitness. Follow him on Twitter: @
Down the years the subject of training has been over complicated in a massive way. It’s impossible to say what ‘the best’ form of exercise is because it would of course, depend on what the individual is trying to achieve from their training. This next section isn’t about the best way of training for say, packing on muscle, for weight loss, for fitness etc. These are all topics I’ll discuss in other blogs. This is about understanding what is required for you to achieve (and exceed) your goals.
The first thing to understand is that it’s vital to set out a clear goal. It may be that you want visible 6 pack abs for example. You may not reach your goal in a week. You may not reach it in a year. The important thing is that you are constantly progressing. That’s where, in my experience, most people come unstuck. They get frustrated as they haven’t reached their goal yet, leading them to give up along the way. There’ll be back for another bash, probably when they’ve got their next holiday booked, but the same thing will happen as they’re not prepared to wait.
The trick for myself and my clients is to set small, achievable goals. Possibly weekly or even daily. Those constant small progressions will lead to a massive change when you look back from month to month. You may not have reached your original goal YET, but you’ll be a lot closer than you were. The key here is to be consistent and learn to embrace the journey along the way to achieving what you first set out to.
When it comes to training, for me there are three really important factors to make sure you aren’t one of the majority that don’t reach their goals:
Whether aiming to build muscle, lose weight, get fit or whatever you may want to achieve, you will need to do the appropriate training with a level of intensity that is higher than you already do. Staying in your comfort zone will make it almost impossible to improve.
The second factor is consistency. I don’t mean a consistent ‘week’ or ‘a good month’ of training. I mean you make it your lifestyle. You decide what you can be consistent with and you build it into your life. There’ll be plenty of times where you don’t fancy training, but it’s the people that do it regardless that show real consistency and will inevitably reach their target.
Once you’ve mastered the appropriate level of intensity and are doing so consistently, you’ll need to focus on progression. This doesn’t have to mean you go from squatting 30kg to 100kg in a week. This can be a small amount of overload. Doing an extra rep? Adding more weight? Doing an extra sprint? Something that means you are constantly progressing and getting ever closer to your end goal. Keeping a workout journal can really help with this. Remember that if you celebrate these small victories you’ll be far more likely to say focused and motivated rather than dwelling on the fact that you haven’t reached your final goal yet.
So when it comes to training. Set your goal, then set small achievable goals along the way. Train with intensity, consistency and progression and learn to EMBRACE THE JOURNEY!