BEFIT Group Personal Training Programming: Inside Look

I wanted to provide you an inside look at BEFIT’s annual, monthly, weekly, and daily group personal training programming to give you an idea of why our gym is consistently the tip of the spear when it comes to personal training and group fitness in not only Langley but the rest of Canada.

We know why you’re here.
It’s to look better, be healthier, lose weight, and get stronger with a side of community and a cup of stress relief.

We take this into account while taking into account the thousands of individuals we’ve trained over the years and the hundreds of individuals we currently call members, and are always looking at how we can give you an edge, move the needle and improve your experience.

Then we hit 2020…

And 2020 threw us a curve ball, perhaps even a screw ball, but now it’s bringing the heat and throwing only fast balls as we sit ready in the batter’s box.

Those fast balls fortunately provided BEFIT with the opportunity to swing away and redefine our methods by which we offer our group personal training.

And now, with 2 workouts (STRENGTH AND SWEAT) running simultaneously in every session, I can honestly say this is the best version of BEFIT that I have ever seen. (And I’ve been here a while…)

  • We went from organized chaos to organized.
  • We went from being moderately good at strength and conditioning to really good at strength and really good at conditioning.
  • We went from being reactive with muscle imbalances to being proactive with structural balance.
  • We went from generalizing to specializing.
  • And we were able to specialize while still providing generalization by putting the choice in your hands of which workout you want to take on daily.

Now that we’ve completed our first 2 months of STRENGTH and SWEAT, I wanted to give you some incite into how our group personal training is programmed so that you can get even more out of your workouts.

Looking at things annually, BEFIT uses what’s called non linear alternating periodization.

This means we program the reps for your year in advance and alternate months of accumulation/volume (higher reps with lower weight) and intensity (lower reps with heavier weight relative to your ability).

We look at your programming both on an annual basis as well as how it interacts with the months around  it.

For example:
July – 10 reps (in main/major movements) – volume month
August – 6 reps (in main/major movements) – intensity month
September – 10 reps (in main/major movements) – volume month

If we look at the month of July, it was a volume month. In most of your movements, you performed sets of 10 (Even those big chippers with reps of 40 should have been looked at through a lens of sets of 10 or so…)

When we look at August it’s an intensity month where most exercises will be 6 reps (of course there are always exceptions like if you are just getting back into training)…

Taking this into account, it’s important to know what you can lift for 10 reps so that you can adjust for 6 reps. That’s why we warm you up daily on the movements in the workout so you can get a feel for how you are feeling under some lighter load and progressively increase the weight.

(One of the things I love about the SWEAT and STRENGTH format is that you’re warmups are much more specific than in the past due to you having all your equipment with you at your station and ready to go. I even like how everyone comes in and looks at the workout and starts thinking about what weights they need for the workout!)

Now let’s look at our programming on a weekly basis.

For this, it’s best to look at our SWEAT workouts as that is where it is more relevant.

See doing hiit training (high intensity interval training) everyday is a perfect recipe to fry your adrenals and will leave you chronically fatigued and never fully recovering from your workouts.

This becomes worse if you are on a low carb diet (which is what we recommend and what works best for individuals looking to lose weight).

So here’s how a week looks at BEFIT:
Monday –  Lower body –  metabolic resistance training
Tuesday  – Upper body – high intensity interval training
Wednesday –  Lower body –  aerobic training
Thursday – Upper body – metabolic resistance training
Friday –  Lower body –  high intensity interval training
Saturday – Upper body –  aerobic training

If we want to take this even further, we could add the following adjectives to the week:
Monday – STIMULATE lower body and BUILD with metabolic resistance training
Tuesday – DEVELOP upper body and SPRINT with high intensity interval training
Wednesday – RECOVER lower body and GRIND with aerobic training
Thurdsay – STIMULATE upper body and BUILD with metabolic resistance training
Friday – DEVELOP lower body and SPRINT with high intensity interval training
Saturday – RECOVER upper body and GRIND with aerobic training

See on Monday and Thursday you should be thinking of BUILDing muscle with heavy weights you can manage for the designated rep schemes and with perfect form.

On Tuesday and Friday you should be thinking of SPRINTing with high intensity interval training (moderate weights with quick perfectly technical movement).

On Wednesday and Saturday you should be thinking of GRINDing with slow paced aerobic based training and light weights.

Of course, not every day will fit perfectly under this formula as I like to keep it fresh for you guys so that it feels like you are not doing the same thing all the time. I also have to take into account that some of you attend 6 days/week, while some attend 2 days/week and everywhere in between. So some days in the week have to be slightly easier than others while still standing on their own as a challenging but fair workout.

BEFIT Training Principles

Of course all of the above needs some principles to abide by, so this seems like an appropriate time to highlight our training principles.

  1. We should never train through any pain – not even discomfort.
    Training requires a humble approach with a focus on patient progressive overload. Training through pain is not ok and it is your body telling you that you are not ready for a movement or it is too much right now and needs to be modified and made easier. Every time you work through pain or discomfort you’re causing more damage than you can recover from. In life you are either going up or down and there is no staying exactly the same, so every time you get into a session where you challenge yourself without pain you are taking a step forward and improving and every time you go too far and work through pain or discomfort you’re going to go down and take a step back.
  2. Training should get you stronger pound for pound
    You should be making your body easier to move, as being weak leads to injuries.
  3. Training should be creating more range of motion
    That’s why the half range of motion rep leads to so many injuries because you are only as strong as the range you train in.
  4. Training should be creating more balance in your body
    You could have the best range of motion and be super strong, but if you are out of balance then you are going to get injured and be dealing with chronic issues. We need to create more structural balance in the body to avoid muscle imbalances and injuries as muscle imbalances mount up as we age and are the primary reason for our limitations. If you are structurally balanced, age is irrelevant.

Those are the principles.

So what are the methods by which to apply these principles?

We have The BEFIT Effect Standards

  • 24 full range of motion strength training and mobility exercise standards for our members to work towards within the context and structure of our workouts.
  • These exercises when in workouts will have an * next to them so that you can look at the whiteboard, be aware of what the standard is and where you want to be long term so that you can work safely and progressively towards it in the short term.
  • You will see these standards routinely programmed in both STRENGTH and SWEAT (but more in STRENGTH).
  • Achieving all 24 Standards is totally doable, but puts one in the upper 1% of resilience and athleticism, by my findings.
  • In addition to this, we have 3 conditioning modalities to make sure we are rounding out the energy systems and giving you standards that touch on all aspects of fitness. These are programmed only in SWEAT.

I hope this post as given you some more insight into the thought behind your training. We have to progress from a mindset of just exercising and move towards the training mindset. Training allows for rest, it allows for recovery days, it is strategic. It can’t just be exercising and trying to burn as many calories as possible. It has to be training with a purposeful end goal in mind and then working backwards from that to where you currently are.

Awareness precedes change, let’s go create some!

Committed to your success,
Josh Saunders, BC, CSCS

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