Strength Training: The (first) love of my life.

Photo by Victor Freitas on

When you fall in love, you feel it in your soul.

It’s an indescribable feeling. Trying to makes sense of is too much, so the best thing to do is just let it wash over you like a wave.

That’s exactly what I did when I fell in love with strength training.

Strength training has been a part of my life ever since I was 12 years old.

I started lifting weights in middle school for football, and did soon after because I genuinley enjoyed it.

I had amazing coaches and people around me teach me how to lift so I could get the most out of my training. They, as well as my desire and curiosity to learn and lift more, pushed me.

Fast forward through highschool, college, and now as a young adult, strength training is a still a major part of my life.

In fact, its my passion. I am a certified personal trainer. I work to get people stronger, more fit, and in the best shape of their lives.

It’s what strength training has done for me, so I want to help people do the same through it.

In my opinion there is no better way to get strong, fit, and in shape. Strength training transcends what is considered exercise. It’s in a category of its own.

People look at it and say “oh my gosh that is so difficult.” Which it is. It is supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t, everyone would be doing it. But that is not the case.

Aside from it being hard, the main reasons why people don’t pursue strength training, based on my experiences, are:

1. They don’t know where to start. Strength training is difficult. But starting is not. Where you start, is with learning the fundamental movement patterns, practicing, and getting stronger at them. It’s that simple.

If you take 4 weeks – training 2 times a week for 30 minutes – and learn how to perform a bodyweight squat, push-up, over head press and pull variation, such as a bent over row with a case of water or dumbbells if you have them, then you will have logged 4 hours of practice and, I guarantee, you will have gotten stronger.

Now 4 hours doesn’t seem like a long time. Let’s just be real, its not a long time at all. But when it comes to strength training, it is. Especially if you are a novice and just getting started.

When you are just getting started, it is imperative that you keep things simple. So many people jump into things too fast and try to go at it as hard as they can. That’s setting yourself up for failure. It’s about longeivty. How long can you go. How many hours of strength training can you log over the course of a year?

The person who DOES NOT HAVE A PLAN, will log very few hours of the course of a year. That person may even fizzle out.

But the person who DOES HAVE A PLAN, will log hundreds of hours over the course of a year, and thousands over the course of their training career.

Which brings us to another reason why people don’t pursue strength training.

2. They don’t have a plan. Having a plan is everything. It’s how you achieve your goal – we’ll get back this in a minute!

When you have a plan, you set yourself up for success. It’s that simple. And luckily, there is a method of progression in strength training that can serve as your plan. Not only that, it’s simple and easy to follow.

That method is known as linear progression. It looks like this.

Lets say it’s your first day training and your first exercies is the body weight squat.

You decide that you are going to perform 3 sets of 5 slow, and controlled body weight squats. Focusing on form and technique. Day two comes around, and you do the same thing.

Day three comes, and you are feeling stronger. So instead of doing 3 sets of 5, you decide to do 3 sets of 6. You do the same thing on day four.

Each week you add one more repititon to your sets of squats. See how this is progressing…

It’s in a linear fashion. You add a little bit more each workout. When you are using weights, you add a little bit of weight each workout. Over time, it adds up to a lot of weight.

That is linear progression. It is simple and easy to follow. But the reality is, is that progression fluctuates. It’s up, down, and almost never linear.

When you are training, you have to be prepared for the days that don’t go your way. When you don’t finish your workout strong, or when you hit a bump in the road and miss your work out entirely. There are so many things that can and will try to derail you from progressing. Both physical, and mental.

But knowing why you started in the first place, is a sure fire way to keep you focused and going when things get tough.

And finally…a final reason.

3. No goal. No why. No reason behind training. You can call it whatever you want. The point is, when you don’t have a goal, you’re not going to see the results you want. You’re not going to have success.

To have success with strength training, you have to have a goal. You base your training around it. You plan based on it. You progress based on it. The more specific the goal, the better. For instance, wanting to lose 15 lbs in 5 months. Do-able!

Now it’s okay if you’re not specific with your goal. You’re goal may be as simple and straight forward as wanting to get stronger, or wanting to build muscle. Nine times out of ten, this is the way people put it. They’re not specific. Which at that point a conversation is had and they do get more specific with what they want.

At the end of the day, what people want is to feel good, and look good. They want to be happy and healthy. I am in the camp that says strength training is one of if not the best way to be happy, healthy, feel good, and look good.

I started out strength training for football, but soon after I did it becasue I genuinley enjoyed it. I don’t train for anything specific these days. I just want to be healthy. I am like the majority of the population.

What I want is straightforward, and simple. It wasn’t always like that, but it is now.

The love I have for strength training…I can’t describe it.

I learn more and more about it, and fall more and more in love with it, everyday. That’s what you should do when you love something so much.

Nurture the relationship you have with it.

I have ever since I was twelve, and will for the rest of my life.

I love strength training! It’s that simple.

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