10 Commandments of Fitness Training
I have been training for part 5 years. Over a period of time I reflect every moment of my training at the micro-level and macro-level. There are commandments I have to follow to make it an effective fitness training session for me. I strongly believe it will be applicable for you as well. These are the commandments;
1. You shall train with purpose
Firstly, please start with a purpose before you perform any form of training. What is your purpose of training? That is the first thing that needs to come into your mind right before you step into the gym or even in the field. What is your purpose of training? Do you want to build a stronger squat? Do you want to build a stronger deadlift? Do you want to run faster? Do you want to jump higher? Do you want to fix your movement?
Your purpose will give you the drive to train more. With a purpose in mind, no obstacles will stop you from training.
2. You shall obey your training program
Whether or not, you design your training program or hire a personal trainer to develop a program for you, you must obey your program. For me, I developed my training program based on my experience, the materials that I read and knowing my own body.
The training program should include periodization, progression overloading, fatigue management, volume and intensity. When you are doing your workout, obey it. Moreover, a proper training program will help you to focus on the exercise because you do not have to overthink but execute the exercise. If you suppose to squat 150kg with three reps, then do 150kg with three reps. Do not be so fancy that you feel great. Then, you squat decided to 180kg! It will mess up your whole program because today’s program will affect the next training block and so on.
3. You shall listen to your body.
The sole purpose of listening to your body is to avoid injury. You do not want to get hurt during your training. If you do not feel well, let’s say you are sick and down on fever. Do not train!
You will make things worse for your body. Even if during your training, you feel discomfort in your knee joint or any joints. Immediately, stop and assess your pain. If it is still painful, stop and rest. It is good to push your body, but never forget to listen to your body. The last thing we need to avoid is a permanent injury.
4. You shall warm-up and cool-down in your training.
Warming up is very very important. The objective of warming up is to prime the body so that it efficient during your training. Trust me; a good warm-up will lead to excellent training. What should you do in your warm up? You need to include the Self-Myofascial Release(SMR), Dynamic Stretch and Muscle Activation drill. Right after your training, you need to cool down. To do that, you need to include static stretch. The purpose of a static stretch is to lengthen the tight muscle.
Please invest this some time to warm up and cool down because it will dictate how long you can train in term of age. I am sure you want to train until you are 70 years old right? So, please take only 15-20 minutes to warm up and cool down to avoid a lifetime injury.
5. You shall earn your rest day
Please do not go three days without training because it affects your momentum of working out. Hence, you shall earn your rest day. You only deserve to rest after you complete the training of the day. Again, never go three days without training unless you are deloading.
I also would like to stress this again; rest is the opportunity for your body to grow. Have enough sleep, 8 to 9 hours of sleep is a must. So your body will be stronger on the next day. Please earn your rest day after your training.
6. You shall respect the equipment
Whatever equipment you use, please treat it with respect. Do not throw the dumbbell around or the barbell. The most important part and most people never do this is to re-rack the equipment back.
I hate it when after people use the dumbbell, they leave it on the floor. Come on! You got the strength to do your set with it, but you do not have the strength to put it back? That is not right. Please treat it with respect and put the weights back because the gym belongs to everyone.
7. You shall track your food intake
They say training is the easy and hardest part of the kitchen. I am sure you heard of a saying, you cannot out train a bad diet. Your food is basically, your fuel to the body. You need to take the right amount of carbs, protein and let’s not forget fats too. Let’s keep it simple; you can be flexible with your diet. But, you need to track your macros (Protein, Carbohydrate and Fat) and eating the right portion to meet your training objective.
8. You shall track your progress and not based on feeling
Similar to your macro, you must track your progress. If you are lifting weights, track your weights, repetitions, sets, and a note to state how you feel. If you are running, track your distance, average pace, duration and inclination. You can write it in a notebook or even prepare a spreadsheet for it. It is the right way to monitor your progress.
Do not ever based on feeling. Let me tell you why? When you train, endorphin, dopamine and of course adrenaline pumped into your bloodstream. These are feel good and pain masking hormone. Let us say, your average top squat is 180kg, 8 reps. You feel good! You loaded up to 200kg squat and delivered 5 reps. Then the next day, you feel pain in your knee or your lower back. The next thing you know, you got back injury. Then, your squat performance drop to zero! I am very sure; you do not want that to happen to you. Please obey this commandment; Track your progress.
9. You shall commit 100% to training
The moment you step into the gym or the field, you should be in full focus mode. You need to look at your training program and commit 100% to your training. No distraction but just focus! Time your rest time properly, and discipline when following your training program.
Here is another secret, your training does not happen in the gym or the field. It happens in your entire day. What do you do outside of your training time, will affect your performance during your training. Let’s say you slept late and drink some beer until you are drunk. Please do not expect to perform in your training at 100% because you are not fit to train. Not many people will understand, and you need to be very self-aware of this. If you want to perform 100% in training, you need to be 100% in life as well.
10. You shall enjoy your training
Last but not least, you must enjoy your training. Whatever you do, lifting, running, bicycling, swimming or any sports. Please please enjoy your training. We understand that training is about pushing the body to its limits. To be stronger, faster, flexible, and the list goes on. It means nothing if you do not enjoy the process of training. If you do not like it, change it and learn to adjust. But, never stop training.