Want to build serious strength? Hell yeah! Here are 5 tips on how to become stronger.
The 5 Keys To Getting Stronger
The most important factor in strength training (or any fitness goal) is consistency. The best training plan in the world will not make you an ounce stronger if you cannot follow it consistently.
Ask yourself how much time you can realistically dedicate to training each day and each week, then build your plan from there. If you’re available to train five to six days per week for an hour at a time, your training plan will necessarily look different than someone whose schedule allows for only three thirty-minute sessions each week.
My suggestions? Markdown your training times in your calendar and set alerts to remind you it’s gym time. Stick to your training plan like you would a doctor’s appointment or a meeting with your boss. Block off at least thirty minutes to strength train, but ideally 45-60 minutes. Three times per week is a great starting point. If you can commit to more days, great.
That brings us to the second most important factor in strength training – frequency. The more often you can get to the gym, the better; though training seven days per week is unnecessary and potentially detrimental to long-term progress. Up to 5-6 sessions per week should be an upper limit to allow time for recovery between workouts.
The next component for building strength is the intensity with which you train. That doesn’t mean you need to come close to passing out or puking during every training session. Intensity can be measured in many ways, from monitoring your rest periods to lifting at a higher percentage of your one-repetition max (1RM) to the speed with which you lift the weights.
Consistently progressing your workouts is the fourth key to building serious strength. The concept of “progressive overload” drives all fitness progress. By continually doing just a little bit more work from session to session, you’ll keep your body adapting and growing stronger.
You can create progressive overload by:
- Adding an extra rep (3×5 this week, 3×6 next week)
- Adding more sets (3×5 this week, 4×5 next week)
- Increasing the weight you use for the same sets/reps (135# this week, 145# next week)
- Reducing rest periods (90 seconds this week, 80 seconds next week)
- Increasing time under tension (lower for 2 seconds today, 3 seconds next time)
Finally, you must remain patient. Strength training takes time. Give yourself 3-6 months at a minimum to hit the gym, put in the work, and create a progressive overload.
To sum up, these are the five keys for building strength:
- Progressive overload
Which one of the five keys above is the hardest for you?
Send me a message and I’ll help you determine exactly what action steps to take so that you build the strength you need to tackle your next adventure or apply for the KPxFitness online training program.
I help the everyday athlete build strength and confidence to tackle adventures outside the gym. From runners, to skiers, to weekend rec league warriors, everyone can benefit from expert coaching to take their fitness to the next level. I look forward to hearing from you.