I just want to get stronger isn’t good enough
Last week I spoke about how I don’t think you should use a photo of that perfect cover model body to motivate you. This week I will talk about what I think you should use to motivate you.
Everyone is different, everyone is structurally different, everyone has different needs and also goals for what they want to achieve out of their fitness journeys. I have spoken about goals before, how to set them and what to focus on before….
Today however, I am going to talk about solid benchmarks relating to strength. I am a massive advocate for implementing strength training into everyones lives.
Mainly for the all round ridiculous benefits it has from preventing injuries to also dealing and coming back from injuries, just check some of these ones out too from DR. Johnrusin.
|Not So Commonly Known
Increased mobility and flexibility
Increased Muscle Mass
Improves cv health
Reduces body fat
Reduces chronic pain
Increased bone mineral density
Improved sleep quality
Boosts metabolic rate
Enhances mental health
|Reduces injury risk
Improved balance and co-ordination
However, often I find people are unsure of what targets to set themselves when thinking about strength training. Regularly, the notion of just ‘getting stronger’ is used during a consultation and during programs it is nice for people to see the numbers go up each week.
And this will happen for sure when first starting out, the numbers will go up and up each week when the first stage of strength training is all neural but the explanation for that is for another time!
Too often though, I see programs changed after the standard “three weeks” and they will move away from a certain exercise to another one to allow for variation, which I don’t fully understand. I am a believer, especially in this setting, whereby if progress is being made each week why change the primary strength exercises? There is an argument for keeping the same workout for as many weeks as you see progress with it.
So what sort of things should you be trying to achieve with your strength work? Simply “getting stronger” isn’t good enough. As we will remember from the previous goal setting blog there is no specificity there.
Here are some solid strength benchmarks I think people should be striving for …
- 1/2 Body Weight Goblet Squat x 10 Reps
- Full Body Weight Press Ups x 5 Reps
- Banded Pull Ups x 10
- 1/2 Body Weight Goblet Squat x 20 Reps
- 10 Body Weight Press Ups x 10
- Body Weight Pull Ups x 5
- 0.75 Body Weight Bench Press x 10 Reps
- Body Weight Back Squat x 10 Reps
- Body Weight Trap Bar Deadlift x 10 Reps
- Body Weight Pull Up x 10 Reps
These are just simple examples to use to set a guide for what are reasonable and good benchmarks to achieve on your strength journey. And everyone will take varying times to achieve these. These arent markers you will achieve over night or in a simple three week program. They will take time.
Obviously, everyone is different and has different needs. These benchmarks may not be on your radar, or what you need. I am not saying these are definitive and should be taken as gospel. I am just giving examples of what I think are good benchmarks within general population strength training to achieve from an all-round perspective. Everyone is individual so level one is maybe all that needs to be achieved, but the main point of this article is to give you examples of benchmarks to set for yourself so that when training the simple thought of “I just want to get stronger” no longer exists and you have something to aim for!