Call me lazy and I'm most certainly impatient especially when it comes to my workouts. I get extremely frustrated if I'm not seeing marked improvement in strength, building muscle, losing fat, and the all important mirror test! The last thing we all want to do is waste our time working out for years without seeing results. There are so many different workout programs out there I'm here to say that EVERYTHING WORKS. I'm not saying that everything works good, but they all work at doing something. However, there are certain workout systems that give you better results in a shorter amount of time than others.
Here are the top 10 best workout rules:
- Workout 3 times per week on non-consecutive days for example: Mondays-Wednesday-Friday.
- Each workout should be done in a total body fashion training all of the major muscle groups starting with the largest muscles groups first. For example: Legs, back, chest, shoulders, arms, abdominal, calves.
- Choose basic exercises such as squats, standing overhead presses, bench press, barbell rows, pull ups, bar dips, dead lifts, barbell curls, one legged calf raises, and barbell wrist curls.
- Use 2 sets and rarely more than 3 sets per exercise. Put your effort into the 2 sets the right way and you seldom want to do more!
- Follow 10 repetitions for upper body and 20 reps for lower body exercises. Use these as a guide but never stop just because you reached the goal reps, continue the set until you can't do another rep.
- Perfect form is most important in any exercise. Move the weight slowly under full control with no momentum taking 2 seconds to lift the weight, 2 seconds to pause in the contracted position, and 4 seconds to lower the weight.
- Always do full range movements ensuring proper balanced development and flexibility. No half reps!
- Rest and recovery is extremely important. Training only stimulates muscle growth, resting and recuperating allows growth to actually happen. Cardiovascular exercise is fine on the off days but no weight training!
- Keep a training log writing down each set and the weight/reps done. Train hard and try to progress each workout in weight and/or repetitions. Whether its 1lb or 1 rep added, progression is the foundation of getting stronger.
- Listen to your body and take time off from your workouts. 2-3 times per year do not workout and rest completely for 10 days. You'll return to the gym with renewed enthusiasm and you're body will feel great.
It's all about what you want to focus on with your health and fitness, use the above guidelines and apply them to your own program. You may have heard the saying train smarter, not harder? Another way that I look at it is train harder, not longer and unproductively, which is training smarter. Use the above workout guidelines and let me know how your results are!