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3 Things for Continual Progress in the Gym

Here are 3 more tips from the great Charles Poliquin on how to make continual progress in the gym.

3 Things for Continual Progress in the Gym

Tip 1 – never increase the quantity of training at the expense of quality

Some days your strength may be up but your work capacity is down. Don’t drop the intensity, drop the volume. For example, let’s say you did bench and got 100kg x 5 reps for all 5 sets on Monday. Then on Thursday you do the same workout and do 100kg x 5 reps for 2 sets, then the third set you only get 1 rep. Stop there, no garbage sets.

It won’t do you any good to lower the weight and then proceed for the next two sets. It will just tap into your recovery and make the next session a struggle as well.

Tip 2 – 2% rule of progress

You should be able to add 2% more to the bar or add an extra rep every workout. If you are unable to do this then you are not recovering properly between workouts. It could be from not sleeping well, not eating enough, eating poor quality foods, spending too much time in front of screens, to name a few things.

So if you squat 100kg for 5 reps in workout one then in the next workout you should be able to squat 102kg for 5 reps or 100kg for 6 reps. This is why it is important to record all your weights and reps correctly so we can monitor your progress and use the correct loads.

Tip 3 – you have to take the time to lay the foundation

Be patient and take your time getting strong. Everyone who decides they need to get stronger wants it immediately. This is not the way to go about it and will often lead to stagnation and injury. You are better off bringing up your weak points and then progressing from there. We do this in your programs but for those of you on distance programs the next thing is to ensure you have perfect technique on each rep and don’t “cheat” do lift a load that you aren’t capable of doing with correct technique. You want to work to technical failure not absolute failure.

Getting strong takes many years of consistent hard work. It isn’t something that will happen in 12 weeks. Sure you will improve from your starting point but to get really strong takes a long time.

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