If you aren’t tracking your BEFIT workouts how do you know you are making progress?
Sure you can track progress with:
- How you look.
- How much you weigh.
- How your clothes fit and feel.
But an amazing way of tracking and analyzing your progress is to make notes of the weights, time, reps, and sets you are doing in your workouts.
And this will especially hold true as we move into our next phase of programming where you will see a different workout of the day (WOD) for the entire month.
Yes, effective July 1st, BEFIT is moving to a different workout each day for the month with these workouts being repeated for a 2nd month.
We call it Phase Training.
This enables us to really focus on certain domains of fitness and is a similar method that athletes are trained to elicit progress year after year without beating up their joints. It enables us to program variety for you while exposing you more to the fundamental lifts which will help you move the needle forward with your health & fitness goals.
Here’s the annual breakdown:
Jan and Feb – muscular endurance
March and April – muscular hypertrophy
May and June – muscular strength
July and Aug – muscular endurance
Sept and Oct – muscular hypertrophy
Nov and Dec – muscular strength
Muscular endurance defined: With muscular endurance you do more reps at lighter weight (relative to your ability – not stupid light), to elicit a conditioning base. These would be the types of workouts where you get a nice burn in the muscle while keeping the stress on your joints low (as it is light enough for you to do multiple reps of).
Muscular hypertrophy defined: We focus on building size of the muscular fibres by training in the 8 – 12 rep range on our big lifts with more of a focus on time under tension and the mind-muscle connection.
Muscular strength defined: We focus on lower reps, heavier weights, and more sets to promote strength increases. These workouts often have you resting a bit more as well, as you can’t challenge yourself with relatively heavy weights if you are fatigued from previous sets.
Yes amongst this, you can still expect something similar to our current partition of the workouts where you see more of a lower body focus on Monday and Thursday, upper body focus on Tuesday and Friday, and core/conditioning focus on Wednesday and Saturday. This format though will allow us to take individual workouts to more total body for you in certain weeks and phases.
There is a reason behind everything we are doing here:
- We’ve partitioned these phases out to be in line with your annual lifestyle. Most people want to come into the gym in January and February and sweat and move.
- We know that you are most likely going to be eating more in November and December which means you’ll have more energy to lift weights and to produce better strength increases. We also know many of you will be in the gym a little less in December, which isn’t a bad thing if you are doing heavy training the 2-3 days you are in the gym that week.
- By repeating the workouts in a 1 month time frame, you’ll have decent enough gap to see better improvement in your training
And of course, if you started reading this and you’re like, Josh, I don’t want to build bigger muscles, I want to lose weight, and be leaned and toned…
Well the thing is…. If that’s what you want, this is the training you should be doing while eating 10 servings of vegetables a day, 3-5 serving of 30-50 grams of protein, and 3-6 servings of whole food fats. If you feel like you need carbohydrates, the post workout window is where you should be adding some carbohydrates like rice or potatoes, or yams in.
If you eat like this and do this consistently, you’ll get as lean and toned as you want to take it.
Speaking of toned, that’s a really funny marketing word and I don’t know why it even still exists… If you want to be toned you need to build muscle and reduce bodyfat. You can’t do that if you have no muscle and are always lifting light or don’t even know if your strength has improved in the last year…
And of course, this brings me back to the title of this post.
YOU SHOULD BE TRACKING YOUR WORKOUTS!
Because how do you know if you are improving or getting better?
Here’s a handy picture of ways to track and keep making progress:
So here’s a few ways you can track your workout progress:
- Keep a notebook (you can store it at the gym where the lacrosse balls and abmats are or bring it with you everytime you come in to the gym)
- Write your workout reps, sets, weights or time on the whiteboard then take a picture of it before leaving, the picture will time stamp it for you and you can refer back in the future (this will be erased for each session)
- Write your workout stats on the workout page (this is a great spot for you to easily refer back for workouts).
And when you tackle that workout again in month 2, you’ll know what you did last time and can improve it with either:
– the same weight and more reps
– the same weight with better form and longer time under tension
– the same reps, more weight
– the same weight and reps, with more sets
We’re excited to see your progress in the gym.
Committed to your success,
Josh Saunders, BS, CSCS