First things first, if you haven’t read Training With Purpose Part 1 go do that here
If you have read it and if you’ve done your homework you should have a F.A.ST. goal already sorted out. If you made notes for your fast goal, go ahead and pull those up.
How do we translate this fast goal into action? We have to flesh out our ideas and create a solid plan.
- Create an agreement with your trainer, a friend or family member, a therapist, etc.. that you will discuss your progress on a regular basis.
- In action this looks like: “I will meet with my trainer 2x/week and we will discuss my current progress, the obstacles I encountered, and ways to overcome those obstacles in the coming week.”
- Write down why this goal is so important to you and how you’re excited for it to push your limits.
- In action this looks like: “I am driven to accomplish 3 pull-ups by the end of the semester because it will require me to be consistent in my training and eating habits and I know I will experience a sense of accomplishment when I achieve it.”
- Write down the exact goal, and the ways in which you will measure your progress towards the achievement of this goal
- In action this looks like: “I will achieve 3 full bodyweight pull-ups by the end of the semester. I will lift 3x per week. I will measure my ability to hold an isometric pullup 1x/week to chart how my time improves. I will also write down my sets and reps on band assisted pull-ups as well as the band I used each week so I can ensure I can either do more reps, more sets, or use a slightly lighter band over time.”
- We are very good at deceiving ourselves! Being transparent with our process allows both us and other to see our behavior clearly.
- In action this looks like: Reflecting on your performance and effort throughout the week and what you feel you’ve accomplished. We must be honest with ourselves if we skipped steps or didn’t do the work as planned so that we can continue to get better.
Now that we’ve fleshed our goal out fully, lets make the plan!
Based upon our 3 pull-ups by the end of the semester goal, and our agreement to train 3 times a week I planned my week accordingly:
Monday – Upper Body Lift
Wednesday – Lower Body Lift
Friday – Upper Body Lift
Next, I’m going to measure how many weeks I have to train:
(let’s pretend, for the article’s sake that we’re just starting spring semester)
So, we have 16 weeks to train! This means we have 4 x 4 week blocks to design our program around.
1st 4 weeks goal = general fitness gains, dialing in diet habits through food tracking, build a baseline of strength with bodyweight and machines.
2nd 4 weeks goal = begin to build muscular endurance in specific areas related to pull-up goal (12-15+ reps) for the lats, mid traps, biceps, and forearms. Spend time on movement skills related to the goal (lat pulldowns, assisted pull-ups, TRX rows), and continue to be diligent with nutrition and make adjustments as needed.
3rd 4 week goal = Move on to a hypertrophy rep range (8-12 reps ) in skill related movements, move away from machines and towards the desired movement (start doing more pullups with bands and less with the machine), continue to be diligent with nutrition and adjust as needed.
4th 4 week goal = Move on to pure strength rep ranges (3-6 reps) and practice the pull-up with as little assistance as possible.
Now it is your turn! Spend some time fleshing out your fast goal and creating a time based plan like the one above. If you have any questions along the way comment below and I’ll answer!
Next week we will look at a week by week plan for this goal and you’ll be able to download an example pull-up program.