5 Rules to Resistance Training

Students are drawn to the Training For Warriors dojo due in large part to Coach Colin’s passion for fitness and contagious energy that motivates people to adopt a healthy lifestyle. For more than five years, Coach Colin has created a family culture in Julington Creek and San Marco dojos that empowers people to take control of their health.

Read below for Coach Colin's top tips for resistance training:

1. If it's not progressive, expect plateaus

So you finally decide to start an exercise program and eat right - awesome! The good news is that almost any program you decide to take on, you'll most likely see initial results. The bad news is unless you have a progressive program in place, those results will slowly become less dramatic and eventually nonexistent. Resistance training must be progressive by not only increasing weight, but also adjusting volume (rep/sets), recovery time, speed and form. Unfortunately, most people will expect long term results while implementing a program that's not designed to achieve them! For most, this will lead to frustration and even giving up on their health and fitness journey. Avoid this by taking part of a program that is built for you to consistently get stronger and better in terms of results, strength, energy, endurance and more!

2. Isolation is key. Too much isolation is a waste of time.

Compound movements that target and isolate large muscle groups as their primary movers will get you significant results! Lifts like the squat, chin up, bench press and deadlift will recruit muscles that include the glutes, lats, quads and pecs. Targeting large muscle groups burns more calories and more importantly, will significantly build muscle which will lead to a higher metabolism and increased fat loss. The issue is the foundation of some people's workouts are flooded with calve raises, 'arm days', forearm curls and about 10 different oblique exercises to target those love handles (we all know by now there’s no such thing as spot reduction, don't we??) It comes down to effective results in a timely manner. Most of us don't have the time to spend hours a day hitting every intricate muscle we can think of. We need to be implementing exercises and routines that will give us the best bang for the buck! Make the exercises that recruit large muscle groups the staple of your resistance program.

3. Throwing dumbbells the size of a sharpie into your cardio workout still just makes it cardio.

If I had to choose my biggest 'pet peeve' with today's fitness industry, it might be this one. Facilities everywhere are selling combo resistance/cardio workouts and disguising it as the best of both worlds. These workouts are basically pure cardio and other than a beginner in the first few months on their fitness journey, will bode less than significant results. If you're wondering whether or not you've fallen into this cardio trap, here are some pointers.

  • If your concern is solely to track and manage heart rate intensity, it's not resistance training.

  • If your point of exertion or failure is because you are out of breath, and there’s no sense of muscle fatigue or stimulation, it's not resistance training.

  • If the way you make long term progress is to move more as opposed to getting stronger and faster while keeping technique in check, it's