Where Do I Begin???

Written By admin

 

This is a common question that I hear (in reference to training) from friends, family, and people at the gym.  What exercises should I be doing?  How many sets & reps?  What type of cardio is best for fat loss?  It’s actually a really good question because there is an overwhelming amount of information out there regarding fitness.  Sadly, a lot of this information is conflicting, especially when things are taken out of context.  The most important thing to remember is to START SOMEWHERE!  Don’t wait for the perfect training program or perfect diet. YOU have to take action to make shit happen.  So, for the rest of this article I am going to make some assumptions about who you are as a reader, what you are looking to do, and try to get to some truths for you.

I am assuming that you are looking to start working out or as I call it, training.  There is a distinct difference between training for progress & distinct goals, and “working out” to burn calories and get sweaty.  Choose to train.  I am also assuming that you are a beginner, meaning that you’ve never done strength training before or it’s been a long time since you have.

I’m writing this plan for those whose conditioning has seen better days.  This is simply an outline, or template that you can use for your own training.  It is a starting point, and by all means you have the liberty to change it to fit your needs.  There is no “magic” program or sequence of exercises.  A training program is simply a window into a specific period of time.  Everything works, but nothing works forever.

Every Program I write has 3 important elements:  mobility work, strength training, and conditioning.  Depending on who and what your needs are, the emphasis on each element will change.  Most importantly, never find yourself neglecting one of these elements of training!  Every Time I have strayed from this, things have gotten out of balance and I ended up paying for it in the long run.

Here is the basic structure of a training session:

Warm-Up – Your warm up sequence should be cardio, soft tissue work, floor based mobility drills, stretches, or light sets of the chosen exercise. Take 10-20 minutes to prep your body. DO NOT neglect or rush through this process.  If you are an older individual or your body has been pre-maturely aged by injuries, you will require more time to warm-up.  This is great work to do on the days you are not in the gym, but need a pick me up.  It’s also very advantageous to use as a recovery tool between sessions.

Strength Training – Big Compound movements including squat, hinge, push, pull, and carry.  I consider these movements the big 5 for a beginner and they should be included in every session.  Focus on movement quality and mastery before adding tons of weight. We are building a base here, in the long run you will be glad you took the time to build a proper foundation.

Conditioning – This doesn’t have to be a 45 min martyr fest.  Walk, run, drag a sled, push a prowler, walk up hill, stationary bike, and rower are all great methods. My general rule here is the easier the activity, the longer the duration. Think a 30 minutes walk at a brisk pace, that activity is much more sustainable.  The more intense activity, the more rest will be required (intervals).  Think prowler or hill sprints. 8-10 sprints with 1-2 minutes of rest will cook your ass.  If you are very out of shape, slowly build.  Don’t feel like you must meet Pukie the Clown to see progress.

Warm-up Sequence

5 minutes of cardio: rower, stationary bike, incline walk, sled drags.

Glute Bridges
Clams
Half Kneeling stretch
Bird Dogs
Extension Rotations
Leg Lowering with KBStrength TrainingGoblet Squat to Box 3×10
Inverted Row 3x10KB Deadlift off Blocks 3×10
Incline Push-ups 3x10Suitcase or Farmer Walk 3-4 sets

Conditioning

Prowler Sled Walks 4-6 trips x 25 yds
Stationary Bike or Walk 10-20 minutes

* If you need demonstrations of the listed exercises check out my Youtube Channel HERE
Simple.  But, even for beginners, there is a spectrum.  For some of you, this workout won’t be a big deal. I can say for most of you, this will smoke you. I can say that because of all the first workouts that I have taken my clients through over the years.  It takes very little at first to make progress.  Milk that as long as you can!  Why would you do more than it takes, if you can do less?  You would never spend $10,000, when all you really needed to spend was $100.Go into this workout TRYING to leave some energy on reserve.  I say try, because initially it will be hard to judge your training tolerance, because you don’t have perspective.  Remember, you can always do more.  What I wouldn’t wish for you is to have your legs crippled with soreness or your arms unable to straighten because you overdid it.  If you can’t train or move for an entire week, that is a counter-productive to your goals.
Start with this training session, make it your goal to train 2-3 times per week.  Even if your goal is to train 5 times per week at first, this is hard to sustain long term.  Think escalation of force.  If you have questions regarding your training, or you are interested in becoming an Online Coaching Client APPLY HERE
All the best,
Freeman

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