Strength Basics

Getting stronger, fitter, and healthier by sticking to the basics. It's not rocket science, it's doing the simple stuff the right way. Strength-Basics updates every Monday, plus extra posts during the week.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Top 3 Old Fitness Trends!

I've seen a spate of recent articles on my news feed touting new fitness trends. Bollywood-dance based aerobics, new machines, new exciting trends to "melt the fat away" and "tone up without bulking up." All the usual stuff, with an emphasis on how it won't even feel like a workout and how fun it is to do.

Here are three not-exciting, not-trendy, and almost certainly under-done old things you won't see ballyhooed in the press. They aren't the hot new thing, but they all work. There is a proven track record of success behind these.

But maybe if I spice them up a bit with some "trendy new thing" language, they'll catch on.

1) Progressive Overload. In this hot take-no-prisoners approach, you don't do the same-old, same-old weights each time. No way! Instead, you pack on the fun each session by adding a little more resistance, a little more weight to the bar. That's right - every time you enter the gym, you go a little heavier or aim to get just a few more reps. You start light - lighter than you normally do - and bang out your reps. The next time, do the same exercise but grab slightly heavier dumbbells or add 5-10 pounds to the barbell. No more confused worries about what machine to do or what variation to try. Just add weight or reps each time! If you can't get your goal reps, don't worry - stick with it next time and get a few more.

2) Good Technique. This is the one you've been waiting for. Instead of just moving the weights around, you carefully learn how to do productive lifts! The best way to do this is with a knowledgeable instructor, but if you don't have one (or can't afford one), there are piles of videos on the internet available for free. There are ones for pushups, bench pressing, squatting - it's all out there for free to learn.

3) Consistency. This one goes back thousands of years, but only now has it become trendy. It's called consistency. The way to do it is to show up for your training every time, day in, day out, and shock your system into some serious changes. When it expects to skip the day and eat pizza, instead, you confuse it through the scientific principle of showing up at the gym and working out hard. Your body won't know what hit it when you show up for your workouts every time they're scheduled.

I can only hope these become a trend!

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