Ok, I’m deliberately picking on semantics here. What I’m really asking, is you consider your approach to training for the next year. There are good and bad gym sessions, and I’m not referring to details like exercise selection and order, or sets and reps etc. (although they are important), I’m talking about your general approach.

Good training sessions are based on programmes, bad ones focus on workouts.

The two are very different. You can’t piece together a series of workouts over the course of a week, or a month and make a programme — regardless of how good the workouts are individually. Workouts are just that, individual sessions. They don’t build to anything.

A great programme is designed to produce specific adaptations over a period of time. Each training session is like a rung on a ladder, making you better for the next one. And each phase of training builds on the one you’ve just completed. To make real progress over the next 12-months, make a decision to train specific qualities progressively. Set yourself a programme.

A programme is never set in stone — you can get sick or injured, or other commitments will interfere with your sessions — you’ll have to adapt and refine as you go along. But, the target of your training remains, work to it with progressive steps. Build a solid foundation and don’t be tempted to take what’s perceived as a shortcut. This is something I discussed in my previous post “Training Dose”, and is fundamental to training to a programme.

Although the purpose of a programme is to achieve a goal, be careful not to make the goal itself your sole reason for training. The learning in the process of attaining the goal is the real benefit. If you haven’t read it, check out my post “Quality Before Intensity”. Don’t miss the opportunities along the way and enjoy every success at each stage of your programme and make the next 12-months your most productive ever.



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  • Don Heatrick BSc. (Hons) Level 4 Strength & Conditioning Coach, Muay Thai Coach

    DON HEATRICK

    Don Heatrick, owner of Heatrick Strength & Conditioning, is a renowned Level 4 Strength and Conditioning coach, Muay Thai coach and former pro Thai boxer from the UK.

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