As the new year kicks off, we know many people are going to get back to the gym or are starting a new training regimen. Often times, people don’t quite know where to start. So, we’re going to talk about the basics of strength training.
How do I structure a strength training workout?
The typical order of exercise starts with a warm up, moves onto power exercises, then core strength exercises, and finally, assistance exercises. The goal is to work from the larger muscle groups to the smaller ones, and alternating either between upper and lower body, and/or push and pull exercises can allow for greater recovery between sets.
|Exercise||Definition and Examples|
|Power Exercises||High speed with large muscle areas recruited
across two or more primary joints. Snatch, clean, push press, jerk
|Core Exercises||Exercises recruiting large muscle areas with two
or more primary joints. Squat, deadlift, strict
press, bench press.
|Assistance Exercises||Smaller muscle areas with only one primary joint. Bicep curl, tricep extension, knee extension
machine, hamstring curl.
How many days a week should I train?
There should be at least one to three days between exercises that use the same muscles in order to allow for recovery. This means that typically a beginner should have 2-3 session per week, intermediate 3-5, and advanced 4-7. While it can be tempting when you begin a new regimen (we get it, you’re excited!), this can be counterproductive. Above all, make sure to give yourself time to adequately recover between your sessions.
What should the reps, rest, and volume of my exercises look like?
Depending on the type of training, there are general guidelines to help determine the volume and rest period for each exercise. Since we’re going back to basics, here’s a breakdown of what this all means.
- 1RM: One-repetition maximum. This is the heaviest weight that you could lift with correct form just one time. You’ll take a percentage of that weight to find out how much you should be lifting.
- Reps: How many times to repeat each exercise before resting
- Sets: How many times to do the rep/rest cycle
|% of 1RM||Reps||Sets||Rest||Goal|
|2-6||2-5min||Increase weight moved for single repetition|
|Power Single Effort||80-90%||1-2||3-5||2-5min||Increase rate of force development for single effort|
|Power Multiple Effort||75-85%||3-5||3-5||2-5min||Increase rate of force development for multiple efforts|
|Hypertrophy||67-85%||6-12||3-6||30-90sec||Increase size of muscles|
|Muscular Endurance||<67%||>12||2-3||<30sec||Increase ability to exert force for extended periods of time|
Looking for more info?
If you need ideas for exercises, we’re always posting videos on Instagram. Check it out for ideas and instructions on specific exercises!
If you have a mobility issue you need help with, you have a goal in mind that you’re ready to crush, or you feel like you’ve plateaued and want help to continue to level up, reach out here.