At first glance, designing an exercise training program seems pretty simple – reps, sets, exercise…done.
Too bad most exercise training programs stink.
Here are some of the things I think about when designing an exercise training program:
- Type of Exercise
- Resistance or load – how much weight, what % of 1 RM, type of resistance – fixed load – bodyweight, barbells, dumbbells, etc, – variable load – resistance band, cam machine, chain, pneumatic machine, etc…
- Reps – number of reps, arrangement of reps, number of reps as % of max effort
- Sets – number of sets, arrangement of sets
- Speed – speed of eccentric/concentric/isometric pause
- Rest – rest between reps, rest between sets, rest between exercises/supersets/workouts/different training programs
- Form – strict, sloppy or somewhere in between
- Focus – how much mental effort is placed upon the quality and quantity of each rep?
- Muscular tension – which muscles are relaxed/contracted during an exercise, how intense is the contraction?
- Muscles Used – prime movers, antagonists, assistance muscles
- Body Position – standing, seated, prone, supine, kneeling, squatting
- Limbs used during exercise – bilateral, unilateral
- Balance / Stability
- Effort/Intensity – is your 100% the same as my 100% effort?
- Equipment – the variety on the market is amazing
- Movements – squat, lunge, push, pull, twist, etc..
- Environment – indoor, outdoor, quiet, loud, commercial gym, garage, etc…
- Injuries / Physical Limitations / Muscle imbalances
- Motivation – goals, music, environment, training partner, etc…
- Extraneous – life,stress,sleep, family support, etc
This is the sort of stuff that goes into a health habits exercise training program.
It’s no wonder that I am starting to get grey hairs.