Sometimes it’s ok to be selfish. After all, when we’re talking about your training. It’s about making you better. Define better however you like. Here are a few reasons why it’s ok to make all about you.
1. It’s Your Goal
As I said, in this scenario define better any way you like. This is your time investment. You determine the changes that you want to make to your body, the qualities you wish to train or the skills acquired. This isn’t someone else’s choice for you. It doesn’t matter if it’s a body composition change, getting rid of aches and pains or mastering the handstand. Ultimately, it’s up to you.
2. It’s Your Body
This one is twofold. Not every exercise is perfect for everybody. Exercises aren’t inherently bad per se but certain ones lend themselves to certain structural body types or physical limitations. If you have excellent overall mobility, and you want to throw that bar on your back, then let’s squat. On the flip side, if you struggle to get both arms straight up overhead due to some mobility restriction, it’s reasonable to say that attempting to press a barbell repeatedly in that same fashion is not the best option and likely another very similar, more appropriate exercise can be found. For most of the general population as well as athletes, getting very strong and efficient at just a few basic and fundamental exercises will pay huge dividends. The second part relates to your current skill level. For example, although handstand push ups and 1-leg squats are fantastic exercises and displays of strength, if you’ve never done resistance training, these two exercises may not be the place to start. Suggested progressions can vary depending who you ask but they’re important for long term success. Through some trial and error find the exercises/movements that work best or are most appropriate for you and apply.
Listen, I might be able to write the most comprehensive and amazing training program ever, but if you don’t have access to all of the equipment it’s not so amazing now is it? Trap bar deadlifts are great. Not every gym has a trap bar. Olympic weightlifting is awesome but what if you don’t access to bumper plates? Same goes for time investment. What if I told you that the best way to meet your goals was to train for 3 hrs a day? Would that work for you? Unlikely, if you have much of a life. Your logistics will ultimately be a limiting factor. What are the tools at your disposal? Figure out whats best for you and then plan accordingly.
Lastly, I think biofeedback is a great tool for helping to guide your training on a daily basis. Let’s say the plan is to bottom up press today. Should you press from standing, or tall kneeling, or from ipsi or contralateral in a 1/2 kneeling position? It’s still a bottom press no matter what. The answer is to let your body do the talking. What is biofeedback? Essentially your body will tell you each time you train whether or not that exercise, or position like in the above example, is a good one for today. Begin to Learn More Here.
– Mike Baltren