Relentlessly to Success or Injury?

It does not matter what your passion is. If you run, do martial arts, lift weights, it really does not matter. Some things will get you better and some things, well they will get you first hurt, then X (insert slow, weak, whatever is that you don’t want), consequently you will gain weight and be unhappy on the couch eating chips!

You might think I am kidding, hardly! Look at your history, that of your partner or friends. Now you can avoid that trap quite easily by training smarter not harder. Here is what you have to do!

  1. Vary the volume of your training. Don’t increase your training volume by more than 10% per week and use every 4th week as a week with lesser volume (not necessarily lesser intensity).
  2. Vary the intensity of your training. Your body appreciates a change in pace. If you are a runner change the goals for your runs, don’t always do the same distance, pace, etc. If you lift weights train in blocks. Train 4-6 weeks at a certain intensity (i.e. 5 reps w/ 2 min RI) then change it to something else, always depending on your goal.
  3. Change modalities by cross-training, changing exercises, etc.
  4. Don’t do trash training. You know what I mean, training to compensate for bad eating, “easy running days”, etc. Train with a purpose. Each workout should have your main goal in mind whatever that is. Ask yourself, ¬†how will this training bring me closer to my goal.
  5. Be consistent, train when you said you would train and don’t double up when you missed a training. You are not stacking! It will lead into overtraining on the back-end.
  6. Injury – If you are injured don’t stop training unless it is medically required. You can keep training but you ALWAYS have to follow the paradigm: If it hurts don’t do it. Most of the time, ignoring pain and working through it does not make you harder, it just shows that you are not being smart. Your body gives you pain signals for a reason.
  7. Being smart and missing a training session because of injury or over-training does not give you the permission to eat crap. Sorry, because that is the time you really should eat well because your body needs it. You are what you eat, so if you eat junk….
  8. Have a plan in place. How do you know you are getting where you want to be, if you don’t even know what it is and what you need to do to get there? Yeah, I know you know what you need to do, blah, blah, blah. Stop making excuses, sit down and make a plan, lay out a strategy. Would you lend anyone money who cannot show you a good business plan? So why do you think you are going to achieve anything without planning for it?
  9. People don’t matter. If the dude next to you lifts more weight, good for him. If the gal runs 30s faster per min/mile good for her. Stick with your plan.
  10. Rest, rest, rest! Your body does not get stronger, faster, bigger, skilled without rest. Training is a catabolic process, rest is the anabolic process.
  11. 8 hours of sleep….I know you don’t have time for that. Then make time. What is important to you? Get off the couch, walk away from the TV and go to bed. Your family, you and your co-workers will thank you if you have more sleep.
  12. Be relentless, be relentlessly smart. Rework your training plan, review it. Have a professional help you. Most of the time it is the people who are persistent that succeed in our personal training and not the ones with the most talent.


Michael Anders

Head Trainer Shape Up Fitness & Wellness Consulting

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