As a trainer I have always strived to find interesting and effective ways of monitoring my client’s progress to help keep them motivated by helping them see their achievements. Some people will track such things as weight and body fat etc but how about monitoring other components such as strength and aerobic fitness? If you are not tracking your workouts which many of us don’t, then how do you know if you are improving or which areas of your training may be lacking? Because of this I started putting together simple fitness tests and challenges that would cover a wide spectrum of health and fitness. I would put clients through these workouts and record their scores/times etc and then 6-8 weeks later would retest. This way the improvements were there in black and white and my clients would be happy in the knowledge that all the hard work was paying off in more ways than just weight and body composition. From these tests that I ran I started to develop the ResultsCon programme (short for Results conditioning). The aim of the programme was to use tests that involved functional exercises, high intensity cardio and the basic human movements of pushing, pulling, squatting, rotating etc. This was the way in which I trained my personal training clients and what I had found over the years to be the most effective way of achieving results. High intensity training is certainly at the forefront within the health and fitness industry at the moment with many studies showing this to be a highly effective and efficient way of working out. Most of the ResultsCon workouts follow this, with the basic aim of getting in and out of the gym as quickly as possible. Workouts can be completed in as little as 10 minutes with the maximum time being around 30 minutes, this short training time means that most people can fit them into their lifestyle and it takes away the excuse of having no time to train.
Now this type of training and the use of fitness tests and challenges is far from new, in fact you can look in most fitness magazines and find a workout you can try and record your score to compare against other people. Or go on the internet or Youtube and again you can find many of these types of workouts on there with people posting and filming their attempts at different tests. Now I have nothing against many of these workouts and I am certainly not claiming that the ResultsCon ones are better. The main aim of the ResultsCon programme though is to test yourself and monitor your own progress instead of testing yourself against other people, using workouts that can be adapted to suit all levels. Many of the workouts out there I feel are very advanced and are either not achievable for beginners due to complex exercises used or the sheer volume of work they require in terms of reps, sets, amount of weight lifted etc. With the workouts in this programme they can be adapted to suit any level, weights lifted will be set depending on the client and any of the exercises within the tests can be regressed to an easier option. This means I can test 2 clients with completely different levels of fitness with the same workout. As long as the clients do the same version of the test within 6-8 weeks then progress can be monitored. Also if a client is starting out with an easier version of a test then this to can be advanced when progress starts to be made, another way in which the client can see they are making progress in terms of strength, fitness, endurance etc.
Another focus of the majority of the ResultsCon workouts is balance, making sure the entire body is being used through a mixture of movements such as push, pull, squat etc. Some of the workouts I have come across will be made up of a high number of exercises that make up a certain movement pattern, for example lots of pushing exercises such as press ups, dips and handstand press ups. Now this is fine if you know how to structure a balanced training plan but for many people they may not have a full understanding of this and it could lead to overuse injuries or muscle imbalances.
The other key to the ResultsCon workouts is technique. Often when people are pushing themselves to complete a workout against the clock then form and exercise technique can go out of the window in favour of pure speed. The emphasis on these workouts is to complete them with great technique throughout, bad reps are not counted!
As mentioned above, the workouts are based around the main movements of the human body such as pressing, pulling, lifting, squatting etc. There are many different ways to classifier the movements of the body with some strength coaches breaking it down to 5 and some as many as 8. For most of my whole body tests the movements of pressing, squatting and pulling/lifting will be the main focus with other movements such as rotating, slamming and locomotion also being featured.
I have been using this programme myself over the last few months, test driving all the challenges that make up the programme and I seen some great results in a short space of time. I have increased muscle while reducing body fat and feel fitter and stronger. Clients who have also been put through some of these workouts have already started to notice the difference as well and they are all surprised at first by how taxing a workout of 20 minutes or less can be and how effective training for this short amount of time can be.
I have now produced an eBook training manual that outlines in more detail this training programme, from explaining the main exercises used within the workouts and the equipment used, to listing many of the whole body challenges (WBC) which make up the core of the programme, to ones that can be done at home with just your bodyweight through to challenges that will take you outdoors. This is available through the website for just 99p.
I will also be posting many more challenges from the ResultsCon programme on here so that you can give them a try yourself and record your own scores and monitor progress.
To give you a taste of some of the challenges that make up this programme I have listed 2 of the whole body challenges below. Give them a go and see how you get on.
WBC#1 (whole body challenge)
Cone press up x10 (Perform a press up over a cone used within S.A.Q drills or something similar. Only reps in which the chest touches the cone count)
TRX Low row x10
Barbell bench squats x10 (Set a step box to a height that your bottom will touch it at the bottom of the squat)
Knee-grab sit-ups x10
Dumbbell shoulder press x10
Bench dips x10
Shuttle run x10 (Set 2 cones around 8-10 metres apart or to whatever distance you have available. Run down to the first cone and touch it and then run back to the start cone and repeat. This counts as 2 reps)
Slamball overhead slams x10
Rest for 1 minute between rounds and the aim is to complete 5 rounds in your quickest time. For beginners aim for 3 rounds and increase the rest up to 2 minutes.
Barbell clean and press
Dumbbell step ups alternating lead leg
Barbell power curls x10
Sandbell shoulder carry 2 laps per shoulder
Overhead slams x10
Maximum rounds completed within 20 minutes.