Whats holding your weight training back?
Most people training in gyms work on their own or with a training partner. My observation over 60+ years of working out in gyms is that the vast majority of people working out make minimal improvement after the first few months.
Yet they continue to workout regularly and never get much, if any, improvement in their strength or their physique.
My strictly unscientific eyeball estimate is that most people training in gyms struggle to reach about 40% of their potential. A few may reach 70%.
This is a completely arbitrary figure, mainly intended to make the point that most people are getting a poor return on their investment of time, money and energy.
Why is this?
My observation is that this lack of progress comes from three primary sources
- Random style workouts
- Poor lifting technique
- Perfecting mistakes
In the first few months of weight training, almost anything you do will produce some results. However, this effect diminishes rapidly, and anyone who wants to make progress needs to have a systematic program or plan.
For example, often I see people in the gym who are doing leg day which consists of an unplanned series of leg exercises that are not part of any set plan to develop strength, appearance, or endurance. It is just time to work on the legs.
Rule 1: Have a detailed plan or your plan is to fail.
Poor lifting technique is one of the big killers, particularly when it comes to building strength. Few people have any idea how to perform power exercises correctly to generate maximum force. Many have only the vaguest idea of how to correctly do the basic exercises such as squat, bench press or deadlift.
The result is that: 1) the lifter quickly hits a plateau; and 2) the prospect of getting injured is high when doing a lift with bad technique.
Proper technique is not for style points. Proper lifting technique is mandatory if a person wants to be able to generate maximum force and realize their full potential. Sloppy technique always means peaking out way below what could have been done.
The only way to correct bad technique is to know what good technique actually is.
When it comes to the power lifts vanishingly few trainers have a clue what to do. For this reason, it is imperative to either get an experienced powerlifter to teach you what to do or obtain a resource that will allow you to train yourself in proper technique.
This brings me to the third reason for trainees underperforming: perfecting mistakes.
Over time if you do something incorrectly, you learn to do something a certain way and it becomes very difficult to change. This applies to lifting technique, training methods, nutrition, supplementation, fat loss and so forth.
As Mark Twain once said: It isnt what you dont know that messes you up, it is what you know for sure that aint right
The main cause of no progress is often a treasured set of beliefs about how to train, what to eat, what supplements to take, etc. Turns out, a lot of this knowledge is what holds you back.
So, whats the solution?
IMHO having been at this for well over a half century, it is essential that you adopt the idea that you must continually learn and refine your knowledge base.
By this I dont mean get sucked in by every new gimmick that comes down the pike. Instead I mean commit to constant improvement, and regularly seek out and study materials that are going to help you improve your performance in a specific way.
If you dont do that, you will continue to get a poor return on all the energy and effort you expend working out.
Learning and changing what you do could give you a big boost in the time and effort you are putting out.
With the idea that most people would rather get more out of their training than less, I wrote a book that contains hundreds of valuable secrets about how to get the most from your effort.
I include extremely detailed instruction on how to do each lift, how to do a training cycle, how to consistently build strength and resilience. In short, how to have the best chance to realize your full potential.
You can check it out HERE.
Best regards, Richard