First things first, let’s talk about how to choose a training program. The most important thing is to define your goals. Your goals might be involving losing weight, gaining weight, gaining strength, increasing flexibility and mobility, etc. As soon as you’re ready with defining your goals, it’s time to find a training program. There are quite a few possibilities here. A few of the possibilities are to download it for free from the Internet, buy it from a personal trainer (PT), or ask a PT in your gym to build one specifically designed for you.
If your gym has well-established and licensed PTs, you may try asking one to build it for you. To build a program for someone you don’t know, will involve the PT asking you to fill a questionnaire. It will involve lots of questions on your goals, current and goal weight, previous experience, etc. This approach comes to a price: licensed PTs are spending countless hours to perfect themselves, to study and learn so a training program will cost you money. Please, respect their time, effort, and knowledge. They will create a product specifically designed for you and your needs, which wouldn’t fit anyone else.
It’s always an option to buy a workout routine from a PT you follow on social media.
If you open Instagram, you’ll find lots of athletes and PTs. Some of them are self-proclaimed athletes/PTs, while others are well-established and licensed ones. Good thing is that through social media they are allowing you to see who they are and what they stand for. You may also see the progress of their clients and how well their training programs are accepted by the community. Some of these PTs may build and design a workout routine for you. Others might not offer this service, but would rather have a set of pre-defined workout routines, from which you could pick one and purchase it.
You may download a random free training programs from the Internet, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
This involves some kind of risk in regards to the results of this training program. Firstly, it might not be designed taking into account your goals. Second, free workout routines often are offering a ‘bro-split’ type of ineffective workouts. Another thing is they might be requiring countless hours in the gym, which isn’t effective either. This involves the risk of injury and overtraining, which are not something you should neglect.
As I’ve been working out for the past 3 years, I’ve been using quite a few training programs and styles. In my post where I shared with you how I lost 9 kg over 5 months, I mention that my starting point was with Tabata. It isn’t a specific workout routine, but my goal back then was to just get moving. And Tabata inspired me to continue pushing forward. Then I asked my PT to build a program for me. We defined goals, meal plans and we started. My motivation was high and I progressed pretty good. During the months on that training program, I was learning a lot and redefined my goals.
My goal is to gain more weight and more clean muscle.
My height is 187 cm, so I’d like a weight of at least 83-85kg. Apart from this, I want to lower my body fat to ~10%. In May 2019 my weight was 78kg, we parted ways with my PT and I decided to continue on my own. I did a personal interpretation of a full-body workout routine and used what I already knew and started to build knowledge on top of it. My learning was coming from athletes who are using a science-based approach because this is important to me. During the upcoming 5 months, I was training hard and later realized I just lost my way. I was overtraining, literally exhausting myself in the gym and I was realizing that I have to change something.
Then, somebody whom I follow on Twitter recommended that I try the full-body workout routine he uses. He referred to a YouTube video of an experienced PT. I checked it out and it looked good. It checked all of my boxes, so I decided to move forward with it. That was the training program I was using till the beginning of the Covid19 lockdown this year in March and later at home. To evaluate the effectiveness of a training program, my goal is to use it for at least 3 months. I used this one for more than 7 months, also mimicked it with my heavy band and dumbbells at home during the lockdown itself. To me, this rather simple workout routine helped me gain 2kg of weight and feel a lot better. I also gained lots of strength, which was also in-line with my goals.
Recently, I started thinking of buying workout routine from an athlete.
I adore Obi Vincent, he stands his ground in terms of science-based training and is very creative. His calls himself CrossLiftr – a mix of CrossFit and weightlifting, if I understand it correctly. I’ve been following him for quite a while, tried a few of the workouts from his videos and I liked them. Obi has lots of experience in fitness and bodybuilding, has a great physique and his content is awesome. I’ve decided to purchase one of his CrossLiftr conventional gym workouts and I intend to start with it from next week. His training style falls in line with what I want, his knowledge is tremendous and I believe this program might be perfect for me at this moment of time.
Watch this space, because I’m going to share with you my struggle with it (I already know it’s going to be very challenging) and how I progress. After I finish it, I’ll write a review here and move to the next one. Or, in case I like the result, I might stick around a bit more and do it again!
Note: This post is not an advertisement, nor a recommendation. Do your own research before following a training program and discuss it with your PT and/or physician if that’s needed.