Men's Health

What Type of Training Program Suits You?

Become stronger, muscular and fitter in this blog post about men's health.

Everyone has a beginning

What type of training suits you, building muscle or strength? You need to understand what your goals are before writing out an appropriate program. Different goals require an unique approach.  Especially as you develop more gym experience and your body adapts to the programming. Everyone who is new to a weights regime will find results will come quickly. Once the initial effects of the new muscle stimulus wears off. That is where the hard work starts, planning becomes crucial.

Not one size fits all

If it is muscle toning you're seeking then sessions will consist of high repetitions, minimal rest between sets. Your goal during these sessions is to encourage hypertrophy which means muscles become bigger through a process called muscle synthesis. Improving power/strength is a different process in which muscle firing via motor neurons improving movement, lifting, and generating more force. To simplify it for you keep reading.

So, how do I program my workout?

Let’s talk about the muscle building program, creating an environment for your body to become more toned and in some cases more buff. You are more likely to lose those chicken wing arms and tone your butt with this kind of program. But…. body building programming comes at a cost. High volume of repetitions, focusing on singular body joints can lead to overuse injuries. Recommended repetitions for body builders vary between 15-20 with multiple sets of 3-5. One single exercise may involve up to 100 reps with weights which can take a toll on your body.

Strength training is marvellous for building up joint integrity and injury prevention. Performing repetition between 1-5 including 1-3 sets with plenty of rest is generally the rule of thumb. Training strength will help your body move and function better but maybe not the quickest way to get that six pack.

Mix and max out

Here is the game changer. Mix and matching the two different training styles in the same workout. Ways you could blend hypertrophy with strength just comes down to good planning. It is important to structure your programming so your fresh for your power/strength efforts first. The central nervous system needs to be fresh to allow weightlifting to be performed with good form and mobility.  Your body has an awesome ability to remember each movement pattern of the exercise allowing for improvements to occur during each session if it is done right with good form. Bang for buck power/strength exercises, would include compound movements that require more than one joint and multiple muscle groups. Compound lifts could include - deadlifts, barbell squats, clean and jerks or snatches.  Of course, this would depend on the ability of the athlete or client hence why I would always seek the guidance of a personal trainer or a coach. Repetition range can also depend on the timeline of the client’s programming.

Keep it basic

I’d recommended for the second half of the programming that it would include higher reps to fatigue encouraging muscle building. Exercises can include pressing, pulling, squatting with variations, lunging and isolation machines. Programming should vary between an upper body and lower body day to focus on building “pump” of the muscles. “Pump” is a word used to describe extra blood flow into the muscle which promotes muscles growth.

Whatever your reasons and goals for weights training, there are so many benefits than just enhancing the look of your body. Stronger body leads to strong minds. My advice would be to take the time around programming, you must have a solid foundation if you are going to have a strong superstructure.