Improving health and fitness is all about consistency and less about intensity. Despite this, you would do well knowing what you want to happen with each day at the gym. You wouldn’t want to be someone who just hopes to sweat and be done once your shirt is dripping. That maybe works for beginners, but you’re no longer a beginner.
The only way to fully improve the way you train is by laying down the groundwork of what you expect from yourself. These are your training standards, and you want to make them individualistically difficult yet also doable and realistic.
Knowing your training standards is a good measure of what you’re current level of strength is. This self awareness can be a guide to either maintain what you have or build on the foundations of your body.
What are your training standards?
Take a minute and ask yourself the following questions:
- What do you expect and accept from yourself session to session?
- What are your progress standards?
- What are your exercise selection standards?
- What time you arrive at the gym?
- What time you actually begin training?
- What kind of people do you train with?
- What kind of gym you will train in?
Establishing standards on every part of your training is critical to creating the best possible training experience for yourself, and keep you moving forward.
Think about it this way…
Even McDonald’s has standards of operation. From uniforms, the look and feel of the restaurant, the way the burgers are cooked, the way the burgers LOOK, to the words the cashiers greet you with, it’s all standard. They accept no less than their standards, neither should you.
Think of your ultimate goal, whether it’s performance or physique based, then write down who YOU have to be, and what your non-negotiable standards will have to be to reach that goal.
Here are a few examples:
- I will train a minimum of 60 minutes, 3x per week, no exceptions
- I must maintain a minimum deadlift 1 rep max of 2x bodyweight
- I must maintain a minimum bench press 1 rep max of 1.5x bodyweight
- I will perform a minimum of 60 minutes of mobility work per week
- I will only train with partners who can train at my level, never below
- I eliminate all distractions during my training time including email/social media
- My training commitment is above all, but family needs
When you get super focused and create your non-negotiable standards in your training, you will make more progress than before because now you have created a CULTURE for your training life.
You have a belief system, and it’s going to be very hard for something to break that system. This is what you do. Your training culture becomes part of who you are, not just an activity.
What do you want to be? Decide today, then create at least 5 standards that support that goal, and never stray from them.
- Knowing what your current limitations are is a starting point in improving performance.
- Set expectations in the form of training time, amount of weight lifted, or number of reps and sets.
- Establishing a standard for yourself is the best way to become stronger.