How to Progress Your Workouts
In order to keep moving forward in your training it’s important to keep track of your progress and aim to improve over time. If you just come in and go through the motions and don’t push things, then that is how training can become a bit stale and you might fall out of your routine. You don’t have to focus on improving all exercises at once in your training, even prioritising a few big lifts to really push up can keep you training with good focus and intensity. Here are few tips on how to monitor and apply progression to your workout.
1. Simply aim to do more than you did last time. By always trying to get a little more done every workout you will be continually pushing yourself forward and keeping your training intensity high. Even aiming to get an extra rep on an exercise compared to the week before can be enough to nudge you forward.
2. Set an increasing set target. Rather than aiming to come in and do the same number of sets every week, pick an exercise, and increase the number of sets you perform every week or every other week. This will give you more volume with exercise over time and improve your changes of increasing your strength with it.
3. Set an increasing rep target. Similar to increasing the number of sets every week you can set a rep target for an exercise and look to improve that every week. This works particularly well with bodyweight exercises. Take the pull up for example, on your training plan you could aim to do 10 pull ups in total in week 1, regardless of sets taken. You could then aim for 12 reps on week 2, 3 reps on week 3 and so on…
4. Pick an exercise or movement to focus on. If there is 1 exercise that you are wanting to see big improvements, then pick that exercise as your main focus and do as much as you can to support it. If you want to improve your press ups, then doing press ups in most or every workout will increase the frequency you do them and let you get stronger with that movement. You could follow that up with some extra exercises for that movement, such as horizontal pressing (Bench presses and floor presses) or even a straight arm plank, depending on what level you were at.
5. Chase progression but don’t force it. While it is a great mentality to always try and push things on in the gym, the reality is that sometimes that just won’t be possible and some weeks even matching what you have done before can be a great achievement. It is important to be flexible about this and don’t try and force progress just for progress’ sake, especially if it comes at the expense of form.
Keep these in mind while you guys continue to train hard. Does anyone have anything in particular they are focusing on progressing at the moment?
by Scott Newcombe