Purposeful Training: Part 2, Cut out the crap and make every exercise count

So everyone needs a slogan and I chose Purposeful Training.  Guess I need to explain what that means.  After attacking the ‘station-hopping’ ritual I now wish to talk about proper planning.  I remember one of my tutors in Premierglobal UK saying words to the effect that ‘You must know the purpose behind each and every exercise you perform.’  Already I can imagine some of you thinking that ‘I do that! A bench press works my chest and a bicep curl works my bicep.  So let me illustrate what I mean by proper planning by going over a chest workout that is, in my opinion, adequately planned (as much as I hate ‘station hopping).

1. Base Exercise: Bench Press. Purpose: Monitor Progress and create intial exhaust

So we start with our base exercise so we can see where we are and how strong we are gettting.  If the bench press station is busy don’t waist your time waiting for it unless your competing in powerlifting compettions.  Dumbell press, smith machine press, technogym press are all exercises you can use for your base exercise where you monitor progress and begin the process of working the muscle fibres in the chest.  All you want is a better looking chest and the base exercise isn’t really where you will make the big difference.

2. High intensity work: Superset dumbell chest press and flye. Purpose, increase concentration of growth hormone in the body

Baechle and Earle’s book on strength and conditoning is like the bible of fitness.  In it various studies are mentioned that show how Growth Hormone levels in the body increase in high-intensity workouts (Baechle and Earle, 1994).  Thus, a superset involving two different chest exercises helps achieve this.

3. Intelligent Targetting

Now that your chest muscles are starting to cry you begin targetting specific areas.  You should know by now which areas aren’t responding too well.  Okay maybe not, you’re probably doing the same thing every time not realising the bottom or top chest has become dominant.  So if for example you can’t get a boob-cleavage like midsection which you crave you need to start targetting this area with more intelligent exercises so leave a comment and I will aim to put up a video or two on this.

The point is, there must be a purpose behind each exercise else you are just going through the motions.  Good trainers can help set these goals for you and give you a specific programme to follow in pursuance of such a goal.  And set yourself more specific goals than ‘toning-up’ or ‘bulking-up’ and more ‘doing ten pull-ups or ten proper push-ups’.

Hope we are now understanding the concept of ‘purposeful training’.