When it comes to getting in shape, resistance training plays a pivotal role in your progress. It is the stimulus for building muscle, increasing strength, and, along with nutrition, losing body fat.
However, if your training sessions are not improving in quality, you will struggle to progress. This is because you will not be providing enough stress on the desired muscle groups for them to grow, you will not be pushing your strength capacity and your calorie output will not be as high.
So, what can you do about this? How can you get more out of your training sessions to accelerate your progress?
Before you start to put in the hard yards, you will need to have a plan and some structure for your sessions. Not only will this create clarity, but it will ensure that you are on the best plan towards your goals and allow you to focus on training hard and being consistent.
If you don’t have a plan or structure, the best thing you can do is hire a coach who will do this for you. This will ensure that you don’t second guess yourself and give you full confidence in what you are doing.
Balance and Relevance
Once you have that plan and structure, your sessions must have balance, based on what you are looking to achieve. This means training key muscle groups that are weak and need to be built and strengthened. For most people, these areas are the quads, glutes, hamstrings, shoulders, back, and arms. However, it depends on the individual.
The best way to do this is to start with a simple workout that you can do consistently two or three times per week. By training these muscle groups repeatedly, you are giving them the best opportunity to grow and develop. Then, further down the line, you can look at changing up your training split and bringing other exercises and muscle groups into play.
To improve your training sessions, you need to make sure that the quality is going up each week. To do this, you should be taking shorter rest periods, prioritising perfect exercise execution, performing each repetition with a slow tempo, and making sure you are hitting the targeted muscle group(s).
This is not only going to increase your energy output, but also increase strength and give you the best chance of building muscle. These improvements should be gradual, week on week, which will allow realistic, effective, and sustainable growth.
Progress Your Lifts
Once you have learned how to execute exercises perfectly, you should then focus on gradually increasing the weight you are lifting. To gain muscle and lose body fat, you need to make sure that you are consistently overloading the muscle(s), week by week so that it is working harder, meaning that the breaking down is more intense during the session and therefore new muscle tissue is being developed during the eating and recovery phases.
Lifting heavier will also increase your energy output, leading to a higher chance of fat loss. However, similar to the point of intensity, these improvements should be slow and steady over time to avoid injury and maintain a high-quality session, based on what is realistic to you.
Work With Others
Training by yourself is extremely convenient at times – you go in on your own schedule, you do your session, and you go home – but is this really going to help you get better. In the early days, if you are inexperienced, working with a coach is the best thing you can do to accelerate your progress.
Another great thing you can do is simply train with others who are more experienced than you. Not only will they give you crucial advice, but they will push you during your session, which is a brilliant way of improving the quality and intensity of your training. This will increase your energy output and place more stress on muscle groups for them to grow.
So, if you are struggling to get the most out of your training sessions, there are some things you can do to change it. These include having a structured plan, training with balance and relevance, training with intensity, progressing your lifts, and working with others.
Leveling up in these areas will not only improve your training but will also progress you to your goals at a much faster rate. Work hard, enjoy the process, and always look to improve.
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