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Programmed for success

All Areas > Health & Beauty > Looking Good, Feeling Great

Author: Will Mbanga, Posted: Monday, 18th December 2023, 09:00

First of all, Happy New Year! I hope you had an amazing holiday season and were able to spend quality time with loved ones, get some rest and that you are now ready to crush the coming year!

Between holiday gatherings, getting the Christmas decor set up and probably doing way too much shopping, cooking and cleaning, I’m sure many of you are looking forward to getting back to a normal routine. The first thing many of you are likely to want to get back into is a good exercise and healthy eating regime, and I have a few ideas to get you started and moving in the right direction.

In terms of exercise, here is a simple question you could address as you kick-start your exercise plan for the year: “am I trying to do too much in any given session?” Sometimes, less is more, and focusing on getting a few core movements or fitness components up to speed is often better than trying to hit every movement and parameter possible in a given workout.

Certainly, from making a ‘new start’ point of view, I know that if you focus on one or two areas to begin with, you’ll make the biggest impact to your fitness.

The foundation on which success is built

The next point to address is programme design. Whether you do it yourself or seek professional advice, having a coherent, progressive and sustainable programme is the foundation on which your success will be built.

The more you learn about the art and science of programme design, the more effective your planning and execution, which, aligned with a solid nutritional plan and healthy lifestyle, will see you improving your overall health, fitness and wellness.

This process begins with testing and assessment in order to establish baselines, understand the biomechanical proficiency (strengths and weaknesses) of the individual, and enable periodisation of a programme using the objective measures from the testing to create more tailored programmes.

While everyone and their uncle knows that testing and assessment is important, using the data to drive better decision-making is what distinguishes good from great programmes.

I’m usually one to leave the best to last, but I’ve chosen to leave my least favourite exercise modality to the end this time. Cardiovascular conditioning is important for general health and wellbeing. Being able to lower your resting heart rate will help enable you to move, exercise or train more efficiently, and has evidence-based, positive long-term benefits.

Low heart rate cycling, rowing swimming and running are key to improving performance while minimising the risk of developing musculoskeletal stress-related injuries. Part of the secret is finding ways to make it more fun, so you do it more often and make it a sustainable part of your lifestyle.

If you’re serious about getting better results through individualised programme design, seek professional help to get you started.

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