Exercise Designing a Training Program: The 3 Essentials

training plan

Ever wondered why you aren’t achieving your training goals?

How to get rippedEvery new client I’ve ever sat down with has the motivation to change. I can tell by the way they describe their goals that they truly want the end result.

So why is it that most have failed time and time again?

More often than not it comes down to a lack of planning and a limited understanding of the necessary actions needed to achieve the goal.

Understand that in order reach your destination you first need to know the directions.

There are 3 issues with not having a well-designed plan:

 1. Without a clearly established outcome, you can’t adjust your training to produce the desired results.

2. Without a metric for success, you can’t quantify progress.

3. Without clear objectives and actions, you’re stuck in a constant state of guessing what to do next.

In other words, how can you even achieve success without first defining, tracking and managing what that success is?

Enter the training program. 

A well-designed training program is the gateway to your goals. It’s the golden staircase to gains. The stepping stone to shredded. Your shining beacon of hope.

But seriously, a training program is that precise list of small manageable actions and objectives (exercises or nutritional habits etc) that when followed correctly will lead you to the end result.

Strength gains, hypertrophy, fat loss. Whatever it is you want to achieve, there is a step by step process to get you there. But what exactly makes a great program?

The SSS method of designing a training program that guarantees results (when followed correctly.)

1. Specific.

You need to train with the correct methods to achieve your ultimate goal. This requires a basic training knowledge, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Let’s face it, training maximal squats to achieve the perfect handstand isn’t going to give you a great reward (believe me I’ve tried). Reverse engineer your outcome by identifying the exercises and habits that will get you there then put them on a day to day schedule. Then just get to work.

2. Simple.

When it comes to training, keep it simple. Don’t do fancy exercises for the hell of it. Barbells and DBs have been around for years for a very good reason. They work. Yes, don’t get me wrong, it’s great to mix things up every once in a while but if you’re just starting out then master the basics first. One of my favorite go to programs for building some muscle mass is German Volume training method. It goes like this:

4 Workouts. 2 Exercises.10 reps.10 Sets. Get in. Do the work. Get out. Eat. Grow.

 It really doesn’t get any simpler than that…and yet it is so effective. At the end of the day, it’s the results that matter.

 3. Sustainable.

 A successful program will develop your performance at a rate that is manageable and achievable. 14 sessions per week with a full-time job and kids to look after? Not the greatest idea. Deadlifting max reps every day for four weeks? Nope. Have the patience to take the necessary steps to set yourself up for success. Balance the training schedule around your lifestyle and the training will, for the most part, become effortless. At the end of the day, life is too short to be putting in meaningless hard work and effort so take the time to plan properly and the results will be (almost) guaranteed.

 Happy Lifting,

 Euan Murray, U1 Performance Coach

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