Tracking Your Progress Part I
An important part of making progress is to track it. And that means more than just keeping a training log of what you're doing. It also means analyzing what you've done and planning ahead.
The first step to measuring your progress is to figure out where you want to be. This is where REALISTIC goal setting is important. And it doesn't have to be fancy. It could be as simple as wanting to increase your muscle mass by the end of an 8 week training cycle, or as complex as wanting to be in the best pre-competition shape of your life over a 16 week cycle.
You also have to have some flexibility in your game plan. While you're training, it's important to feel your way into the workout. By that I mean don't let the way you feel get in your way of getting a good workout. For example, let's say you were up partying the night before and the last thing you want to do is heavy squats. As if you weren't queasy enough as is.
The only way to gauge how ready you are to really train is to start your warm-ups and see how they feel. If they're okay, move up as per plan and see how the heavier ones feel. If the weight feels lighter or alternately if you feel stronger than usual, then go for that extra mile. If not try and stick to the game plan as close as you can. If the weights feel heavy and you just don't feel strong enough, back off AND DO THE BEST YOU CAN FOR THAT DAY. That'll do the trick. It always did for me because the next workout, or maybe even the one after that, I would do great.
You do need to set some goals, both short and long term, and this is important even if you don't compete. And you have to be both realistic and flexible. Flexible because you might have to adjust your long term goal by using the short term ones as guidelines, resetting both the short and long term goals as needed. It's important that you reach high enough to stimulate you and your training, and just as important that you don't overreach and subsequently get discouraged.
One thing that has kept me in good stead over the years, is keeping an accurate training log. In the log I wrote down every rep and set I did for every workout. I also wrote in some brief notes, for example, how I felt before training including if I was tired, didn't feel like training, if I had a cold, or was injured, or ran into anything that might throw off the training for that day.
That training log should be by your side at all times while you're training, and one of the first things you should do after a training set (after you take off whatever is restricting the blood flow to one or more parts of your body), is to mark down what you did. The training log is invaluable for setting up your training schedule and for finding out what works for you.
It's also invaluable to figuring out how you're coming along and if you need to make any changes in your short and long term game plans. I used to pour over my training log all the time, trying to figure out where I was going, comparing my present routine to past ones, and then figuring out if I needed to make some changes or just leave things as they were.
If I was making good progress, I'd analyze the previous few months of training to see what it was that was working so well. And at times when my training staled out, I'd look back again and see what it was that wasn't working and then comparing what I'd been doing to successful phases in the past.
Also in analyzing my log I found out that I did some of my best workouts when I wasn't in
And remember, when you're training, don't let anyone or anything distract you. Leave all your problems at the gym or training room door because your sole purpose in life while you're training is to lift the iron in the best way you can, both physically and mentally. If your training space doesn't allow that, then change spaces until you find a situation that is 100% geared to training and training alone.
Leave your cell phone and other electronics and any other possible distractions out of your training space. As far as having conversations and chit chats, that's between you and your training partners-comrades that know when it's time to train and when it's time to talk. All the others get a grunt and/or a NOT NOW look. Leave all the chit chatting and horsing around for after the workout.
Bottom line is that your training time is for training and nothing else.
Maximizing Your Training
To maximize the anabolic, performance and body composition effects of training, and to make sure you don't waste all the time and energy you invest in your training, you need to make sure that your body has all the natural advantages that it can by using the right pre-training supplements.
In order to maximize the results you get from your training you have to be primed both physically and mentally before you actually start training. And the best supplements to do that is Resolve.
Resolve represents a new paradigm in pre-training supplements.
Resolve provides anticatabolic and anabolic effects by increasing levels of testosterone and growth hormone, decreasing protein breakdown, increasing protein synthesis and providing cell volumizing effects that increase muscle growth.
Resolve also maximizes energy levels, ATP and phosphocreatine (PC) functioning, as well as gluconeogenic, TCA Cycle flux, and other processes, allowing for more strength and stamina.
As well, it provides potent thermogenic and fat loss properties, increasing fat breakdown and utilization and decreasing fat buildup.
And finally it exerts a potent antioxidant, buffering and cytoprotective effects to decrease muscle tissue injury and soreness and improve recovery.
The present formulation of Resolve is Resolve version V. Each version has been improved over the last one taking into account my ongoing search for improving the product, new research and feedback from the trenches. For the nutrition panel of Resolve go to my article on New Formulations
. Also visit my store for more info on Resolve