Achieving any result or goal in life comes down to two things:
- Knowing the right way to do it
- Doing it everyday
And getting stronger, more toned, putting on a bit of muscle is no different. You need to do the right things and do it every day, or at least a few days a week.
Going to the gym once or twice a week isn’t going to achieve anything. At least three times and you make progress. Whether you go 3 times a week or 5-7 times a week depends on your lifestyle (if you can’t make time to workout 3 times a week, you need to figure out how to change your lifestyle to make time) and the sort of training program you use. A good ‘split training’, where you train different muscle groups on different days, will require you working out at least 4 times a week.
Other programs require you working out 4 times a week minimum.
I’ve tried a whole bunch of programs throughout the years, and if you want results from working out, you need:
- The time
- The right program
- A diet plan
You need all three to get optimal results from working out. If you work out, but drink beers and eat take-away every night, you are not going to make much progress. If you have a strict diet but don’t goto the gym, you’ll probably end up looking like a bunch of sticks.
The Workout Program I’ve Been Following For Several Months
I’ve tried a bunch of working out programs. I had a “home made gym” in the back garden, done crossfit and traditional body building programs. But, for the last few months I’ve been using Victor Pride’s “Body of a Spartan” program. It’s pretty easy to follow, the eBook explaining the program, the workouts and the exercises is simple and clear
Here’s my hang ups with other programs:
Home made gym: If you have no options and want to get started, this is good. And it is better than nothing, for sure. But… it gets repetitive… fast.
Crossfit: If pure strength is the goal, then crossfit might be a good choice. My strength improved very quickly doing crossfit. The downside is injuries. While the crossfit haters on the internet talk about ‘rabdo’ (This is when you overwork your muscles and they turn into jelly. I never saw one case of that the 2-3 years I did crossfit), I did pick up other little injuries more often. The worst was doing a power clean. I was going for a PB, screwed up the lift and went to drop it. My elbows were too close in, and got trapped against my legs – and the bar snapped back and hyper extended my thumb and wrist. I didn’t permanently damage anything (fortunately), but I couldn’t put any pressure on that wrist for nearly 7 months. Not cool. Also, crossfit is the most expensive option (aside from hiring a personal trainer).
Traditional BodyBuilding: A good way for getting toned and building muscle, but, I found the traditional diet (chicken, brown rice and spinach) absolutely brutal and hte workouts a little bit repetitive. I got spotty and had mood swings from being hungry. Anyone who thinks bodybuilding is a joke sport should try it for a year, the discipline required to be the best is insane.
And here is why I like Body of a Spartan:
- Flexible workouts The program is flexible. Victor (the author) walks you through how to build out a program based on your experience. Once you’ve done that, changing it is pretty easy. This helps me big time when it comes to overcoming boredom and repetitiveness.
- Simple diet No crazy strict diets. No weighing your food. You get some simple, easy to follow rules.
- No crazy amounts of cardio You don’t have to do cardio all day every day to follow the program. You should do a bit of cardio, but you don’t have to go overboard with it.
- Results I’m putting on muscle, getting better toned, and the program is pretty easy to stick to.
If I start to feel bored, I figure out a new work out program, and do that for the next few months. I make sure I do 4 days a week minimum, preferably 5. I’m doing a couple of side jobs at the moment, so doing 5-6 days a week is not practical for me… but it is still working. If there is an exercise I don’t like the look of, I swap it out for something that works the same muscle group.
Disclaimer: I’m not a medical professional, this is not professional advice. This is just a description of what I do and what I have done.