There are 3 HUGE areas that I see people fall down on in their training. It’s the lack of any sort of CONSTANT gain. Strength gains, speed gains and muscle gains all depend on these 3 things and doing without just one of them will doom your progress as an athlete.
AREA #1 – Progressive Overload
The simplest things are often the best! Using your BIG main exercises (SQ, BP, DL) each week and adding just a bit more weight to the bar, or using a harder variation, or doing more reps or sets is such a simple way to progress each workout. Are you doing it?
It’s really easy to train hard each week but not make any progress IF you are using the perceived physical difficulty of your workout as your compass.
You see, workouts that feel really hard may actually serve little to no purpose towards your goals. On the other hand, workouts that seem easy may be perfectly edging you towards success.
Use the weight on the bar, or the speed of a sprint, or the height of a jump as indicators of your progress. Basically, find things in your workouts that you can measure…and measure them! Aim to improve on one thing at a time and keep progressing weight, reps, sets, exercises etc.
AREA #2 – Consistency
If the best coach in the world gave you the best program in the world and told you how to do it, if you had an Olympic support team and the best food and recovery sources known to man, you’d be guaranteed to improve, right?
If everything was perfect with your training and diet on PAPER, the only thing holding you back is actually DOING the workouts. I can’t believe people fail to see this in their own training but it’s true; IF YOU MISS WORKOUTS YOU WON’T GET BETTER.
I won’t dwell on this point for long, basically, it doesn’t matter how good your program is, make sure you do every single workout, no excuses. How you spend/waste time is your decision, so don’t blame lack of time or anything else!
If you choose to go out for drinks with your mates instead of training, that’s your decision. Oh, and by the way, everyone feels muscle soreness and every now and then doesn’t feel like training (AKA heavy squat day). The difference is that successful athletes push through and train anyway.
AREA # 3 – Post Workout Nutrition
Whilst I could say that the nutritional plans of failing athletes are generally terrible, the biggest mistake that I see is the lack of post-workout nutrition. Now, I don’t mean that the protein shakes or post-workout meals are bad……I mean that they don’t have anything at all!
After you train your body is primed to grow and recover, having a glass of water and then watching TV isn’t gonna cut it.
Post-workout nutrition MUST consist of a fast acting carb source, i.e. sugar, with some protein thrown in. Personally I use chocolate milk from the supermarket which has everything that you need after training plus you don’t have a million and one ingredients/additives in like most supplement powders.
After you’ve had your post-workout shake, have a solid MEAL. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice for the carbs. Now grab a nice juicy steak, or some chicken breast or pork chops. Then to finish get loads of vegetables and pile them up high on your plate. Eat until you are full. NOW you can go and watch TV.
The whole post-workout ‘window’ needs to be managed effectively to be effective! Choc milk + quick and easy (but large) meal = successful athlete.
Now take a good look at yourself and evaluate how well you do in these 3 areas. Identify which one needs work and then improve it over the next 7 days, then pick another area and improve that over the next week. Keep doing this EVERY week, keep learning and implementing new methods and the speed of your success will be UNREAL!
I’ll help you if you need it, just drop your comments below!