It’s a common sight at the local gym. It doesn’t matter where you live or what gym you go to. There will be someone there beating the absolute stuffing out of himself. This person usually has no real plan and has a goal to lose weight. Burn off those calories to achieve your goal! Maybe…Going to the gym and working out until you’re sweaty and exhausted may not get you where you want to go. I’ve seen clients leave extremely good trainers just to work with a trainer who will beat them to exhaustion. In these cases the second trainer was usually far less knowledgeable than the first trainer. More is not always better.
Hard work built upon smart work will get you where you want to go. Just hard work can actually make things worse many times. Whether you’re building a program for yourself, or hiring a trainer to do it for you, know why you are doing what you’re doing. Ask questions.
If your goal is weight loss, then actually your diet is more important than your workout. If it’s you ability to perform physically, now you’re talking workout. It’s important to perform movements with good form and to learn how to perform them efficiently.
Every time you perform a movement, neurologically, you become more likely to perform that movement in a similar way next time. So if you perform a movement inefficiently due to exhaustion multiple times a workout, compounded over multiple workouts a week you can build up some very, very bad habits.
While this may not be problematic immediately, over time it adds up to a lot of wear on the body. This approach greatly increases your risk of injury over time. Over years of training past exhaustion and treating every workout like a competition, I’ve managed to break myself a lot.
It’s taken me a long time to learn to train smart. However, the benefits have been pretty awesome. Instead of training really hard for a few months and then have to take time off to heal something, I can now train consistently. While it seems counter intuitive, training at a slower pace but more consistently, I’ve managed to make better improvements.
Another benefit that I’ve found is that now that I’m not forcing movements at the end of sets and workouts just to “get my reps” is that my workouts facilitate my life. My new approach of focusing on good technique improves my daily movements instead of just improving my lifts.