In a previously posted blog, “Multi-Tier Vs. Single Track Programming," we discussed the advantages of a multi-tiered fitness program. As a brief review, we want to deliver a clear plan with clear expectations to a wide variety of people. To do so, we provide three separate tracks for each workout; sport, performance, and function. Below is an example of our three separate workout tracks, the same used in the previously mentioned article:
15 Min AMRAP
12 Ring Muscle Ups
36 Kettlebell Swings 70/53
12 Bar Muscle Ups
36 Kettlebell Swings 53/35
12 Burpee Chest-to-Bar (jumping if needed)
36 Dumbbell Hang Snatch
Target Rounds: 3-4
Do you struggle choosing which workout track is best for you? This article will address three factors to take into consideration when making your decision:
Your capabilities. The goal of each workout is to achieve the intended stimulus. In the example listed above, the goal is to accumulate three to four rounds within the given fifteen minutes. Perhaps you are capable of doing a few bar muscle ups and some swings with a fifty-pound kettlebell, but it would take you significantly longer than fifteen minutes to perform at least three rounds. That isn’t the intended stimulus. In such a case, mixing the performance and function tracks by pairing burpee chest-to-bars with lighter swings using a thirty-five-pound kettlebell would be a great option.
Your recovery. Do you regularly get seven to nine hours of sleep per night? Do you regularly eat an adequate amount of protein? Do you drink enough water? Our recovery supports the training we do. That is not to suggest that choosing the function tracks means you neglect your nutrition and rest. It does mean, however, that if you regularly choose the performance or sport track, you will need to give greater attention to your recovery. You cannot train sport on a function lifestyle. If you do, you will feel the effects in the form of constant injuries and low energy.
Your goals. What do you want to get out of your workouts? Do you want to have more energy for your children? Do you want to maintain your health and fitness so that you can have a more independent lifestyle as you age? Are you fascinated with high-skill movements and eager to learn them? Do you want to participate competitively in local events? What may be engaging and exciting to one person may be an unnecessary risk to another. With your capabilities and recovery in mind, consider what your purpose for exercising is, and choose the workout track that most supports that purpose.
Remember, too, that you are not committed to one single track indefinitely. Due to your specific capabilities, lifestyle, and goals, one track may be appropriate for you at certain times, while another track may be appropriate at others. Sometimes it is appropriate to push the envelope, and sometimes we need to stick strictly to the target stimulus. Keep the above mentioned factors in mind, and you will have no problem choosing the right workout track for you!