GET STARTED WITH A TRAINING PLAN DESIGNED FOR YOU! You want to use the rest of 2021 to get in shape. You’re fired up and ready to make your goal a reality! But where do you start? Exactly how should you train? Here’s how to create a training programme from scratch. WHAT’S YOUR GOAL? The first question to ask yourself is what you want to achieve. Do you want to lose weight, add muscle, get strong, or learn a new skill? Your goal will dictate everything about your training plan. But it’s not the only important factor to consider. HOW OFTEN CAN YOU TRAIN? You need to be honest and realistic about how often you can train. The best training plan for you is one you can stick to and be consistent with. There’s little point talking about a 5-6 day training plan if that won’t fit with your life. What is the minimum weekly commitment you can make to training? WHAT EQUIPMENT DO YOU HAVE? The final consideration is resources. Do you have a gym membership, or will you be training at home? What kit does the gym have? What equipment do you have at home? The best training plan allows you to move towards your goal with the resources you have available. TICK THESE 5 BOXES Whatever your outcome goal may be, you should design a training plan that hits these 5 process goals. These things are important for strength and physical wellbeing, whoever you are!
BUILD A PLAN AROUND STRENGTH TRAINING Resistance training should be central to your training plan (yes, even if your goal is an endurance event or team sport). Strength training will have a positive impact on all of the areas listed above. It will also boost your long-term health, body composition, and health outcomes.
HOW TO CREATE A STRENGTH TRAINING PLAN You have already stated how many times per week you can train. Within this, aim to train each major muscle group every 72 hours. What does this look like in real terms? If you can train 3 times a week: full body each session If you can train 4 times a week: upper/lower or push/pull If you can train 5 times a week: push/pull/legs rotation PICKING THE BEST EXERCISES The human body moves in set ways, and every movement we do (in and out of the gym) reflects these fundamental movement patterns. Make sure your training plan reflects these important movements.
Squat and squat variations
Hip hinge movements
Single leg work (lunges, step-ups)
Horizontal push (press-ups, bench press)
Horizontal pull (rowing movements)
Vertical push (overhead pressing work)
Vertical pull (pull-ups or pull-down exercises)
FULL BODY TRAINING SESSION EXAMPLE Here’s how a full-body session could incorporate all of those movements (without spending hours in the gym!)
Squat – barbell back squat, front squat, or goblet squat (4 x 8-10)
Hip hinge – hip thrust or kettlebell swing (4 x 10-12)
Lunge – front rack lunge or weighted box step-up (3 x 8-10 each leg)
Horizontal push: flat dumbbell press or press-ups (3 x 8-10)
Horizontal pull: ring row (4 x 10-12)
Vertical push: dumbbell overhead press or push press (3 x 6-8)
Vertical pull: close grip pull down or assisted pull-ups (4 x 10-12)
A FEW RULES TO REMEMBER… Consistency is key. It’s better to stick with an 8/10 training plan than to have a 10/10 perfect plan…but only do it sometimes. Stick with it. Create a decent plan that hits all body parts and incorporates progressive overload, and stick with it for 12 weeks before changing up. More pull than push. Focus on areas of the body we underuse in everyday life. Do more reps on legs and pull (your back) than on push. Rest. Every training plan should have at least one rest day a week. It will pay off in the long run, as you’ll be able to recover. What about cardio? If you have extra time for cardio and want to do it, by all means, add in a little cardio. But remember that cardio can be done through HIIT or conditioning work – not just machines. Don’t forget to fuel yourself and grab yourself all your workout must-haves
here. @phdnutrition. WRITTEN BYNicola Joyce Nicola is a specialist freelance copywriter for the fitness industry @thefitwriter