I recorded a boxing match from the other night and finally have some time to watch it while I’m eating breakfast. During the match, I’m listening to the commentators talk about how one fighter has thrown around 100 more punches than the other fighter, so he must be winning the fight, right? Wrong. Another commentator jumps in and begins explaining how just because fighter A has thrown a high number of punches, he is likely losing the fight because fighter B is throwing more EFFECTIVE punches. From a percentage standpoint of clean punches landed that were not blocked, missed, etc. fighter B is fighting a more effective and efficient fight, so he has a higher likelihood to win the fight.

Which brings me to my initial point, how effective are you being with your strength training program? Are you being as effective and efficient as you can be? Let me be clear that there is a difference between those two; being effective is about doing the right things, while being efficient is about doing things right. I’ve seen people far too often who are spending too long in the gym and doing too many exercises that are ultimately taking away from their ability to recover and train hard during the next training session. Everything you choose to do in the gym ultimately takes away from your ability to do something else. So, when you are choosing what training program, percentages, sets, reps, and so on, take a step back and ask yourself “is this choice going to be the best use of my time while I’m in the weight room”?

In order to get the best results from your training (regardless of your goals) preparation, consistency, and execution are the keys to a successful program. However, no matter how perfect you may think your training program is, understand that you can’t anticipate exactly how you’re going to respond to each training session and each training phase. One of my favorite quotes in regards to training comes from Mike Tyson “everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face”. It’s a great idea to have a structured strength training program laid out, however, based on your individual needs, be ready to make adjustments and tweaks along the way if need be. For example, if I am two weeks into a new program and I find that I’m not recovering well and not sleeping well, I might try decreasing the volume by 10 – 20% and see if that improves my performance.

If you have questions about how to plan or adjust a training program, fill out the form below.