There is only one thing you should focus on when you workout. If you get it, you make gains. If you don’t you stay stuck.
That thing is called progression.
Problem is,there are 101 other things that are supposedly so darn important. Diet, supplement, routine, sets, reps, weight, lifting temp, rest periods, equipment selection, heart rates, pre- and post workout nutrition, water intake, metabolism, body type, genetics, and more stuff is often said to be the key to getting you results.
Trust me, it isn’t.
None of that stuff amounts of a hill of beans if it doesn’t actually help you do your next workout 1% better than the one before it.
Progression is the one thing you must have to get results and the one thing to you need to make progression happen is a progression plan.
A progression plan is simple. It’s simply knowing what you’re trying to improve during that workout, exercise, set and rep.
I never get down on the floor or jump up on a pull up bar without being focused on somehow improving my technique or numbers.
For example, I just finished my pull up workout and my progression was to increase the proactive tension in my upper back while increasing shoulder stability.
I’ve been working on that shoulder stability for a few weeks now and it’s made a massive difference in how my back and pulling exercises feel. When I grab the bar I feel my lats and biceps fill with tension like a balloon where as before they felt flat.
Keep in mind that progression doesn’t always come from more reps or adding weight. Most of your progression will be technical where you do the exercise just a little better so you can use your muscles better. I’ve been doing 10-15 pull ups for months but those 10-15 pull ups are far stronger than they were in February.
Progression isn’t complicated. You don’t need a masters degree in exercise science to figure out what your next step is. Just ask yourself how you can put a muscle under more tension for more time and you’ll find your answers soon enough. Like many things in fitness, progression is often best searched for and discovered on your own. The only catch is you have to look for it yourself. I can’t make you see and appreciate a sunset or piece of salmon sushi any more than I can make you discover your progressive plan.
So what’s your next step? What are you working on? Keep these questions in mind during your next workout. I promise it will open up massive opportunities for you.