Training Volume vs. Progress & Results

Everybody’s reason to exercise is unique to them. Some want to improve their health while others want to improve their performance in the gym. Some want to improve their physical appearance, and some exercise to help with their mental health. The reasons people work out are as vast and as varied as the benefits that exercise itself has – which is a lot! Irrespective of your motive to exercise, there is one very important concept that must be understood:
Just because something is good, it doesn’t mean that more is better.
There is a sweet spot for everything – the amount of food you eat, the amount of water you drink, the amount of exercise you do, and the amount of sleep and rest you get. A sweet spot can be defined as the point or combination of factors that guarantees an optimal return for your input or efforts. Basically:
What is the minimum amount of effort that yields the greatest amount of return.
Going beyond that sweet spot can more often than not become detrimental to your progress. At the very least, it will not be beneficial. At the very worst, it will be harmful. Finding that sweet spot is imperative to getting a good return from your training investment, therefore reaching your goals faster, safer, and more effectively. If you find yourself putting in a lot of work and effort, and your results are not reflecting that hard work, then look at things such as: • The quality of your training program. Is it conducive to your goals? Does it align with your abilities? Don’t do fat loss structured workouts if your goal is strength! Ensure you are using the right tool for the right job. • The quantity in which you are training. There is a big possibility you could be training too much and not recovering enough. You could also be training not hard enough and not giving your body enough reason to adapt. • Are you spending all this time in the gym and undoing it all in the kitchen? Remember – you can’t out exercise your diet if you are overeating!
It is important to understand that you can only train as much as you can recover. Think of it like a blister. When you get a blister from friction, and you remove that friction and let it heal, it heals harder than it was before so it can handle that same amount of friction in the future, without creating another blister or tear. If you DON’T remove the friction for a while, it doesn’t get the chance to heal and become more durable. Instead, the blister will keep tearing and reopening, and the amount of friction you can handle becomes LESS. You can think of training in much the same way. Apply the friction (training), and then give your body time to recover and adapt. When you come back into the gym, you will be stronger, faster, and more conditioned because of it. Don’t confuse efforts with results. Being busy doesn’t mean you are being productive, just like training more doesn’t mean you’ll reach your goals faster. Make sure you are getting a return from your workouts and aren’t just training for the sake of training, with no change towards your desired progression. If you want help on finding your sweet spot, or some information on how you can determine if you’re under or over your sweet spot – make sure you ask us if when you next see us floating around the gym. Or email info@instituteofphysicalculture.com to book in a call to have a chat!