Bulletproofing Your Workout

I've made mistakes as a trainer.  This, I know.

One such example is training individuals the way I want to train them, rather than focusing on THEIR goals.  While heavy squats and deadlifts are part of what get me out of bed in the morning, I realize that's probably not the case to any sane, logical person.  And hey, that's OK with me.

The more I've learned (and dare I say, matured?) the more I realize that everyone is different.  No single exercise makes or breaks a workout or program as long as it's balanced. So, what IS balance?

Contrary to what many bros believe, "balance" is not just for gymnasts.

Contrary to what many bros believe, "balance" is not just for gymnasts.

I've always believed that a "balanced" workout should cover the following five bullets:

  • Hip Hinge
  • Squat
  • Carry
  • Pull
  • Push

....in that order!  Those elements, regardless of age, need to included on a regular basis.  I have several clients that are more than twice my age (I'm 27, so you can do the math), and while they may have more mobility restrictions than my younger clients, we perform a variation of the five movements each week.

Does this mean heavy deadlifts for grandma!? Well, no.  But, everyone (and I do mean everyone) should be performing these basic fundamental movements.  While there are no one-size fits-all approaches when it comes to specific exercises, everyone should be performing either progressions or regressions of those five bullets.

I know you're probably saying "Ok, but, what does that look like?"  For an advanced lifter it would probably be conventional deadlifts, front squats, waiter walks, pullups and bench press.  On a more basic level, it may simply be a glute bridge, goblet squat to a box, farmer carries, rows and pushups.  Yes, designing a balanced program really can be THAT simple.

In fact, those 5 bullets are so important that if you're performing those five movements on a weekly basis, then that's really all I care about and all you'll need for progress.

Take inventory of your own program and see how many of those movements are included in a single week.  If they are, that's terrific.  If not?  Well, you know what to do.