The Importance of Planning
3 minutes read
on 11 Apr, 2023•3 minutes read
Last time I spoke about finally figuring out my workout split and how it's really helped find progress and growth across a range of lifts. I really think this a huge part of understanding what's best for you and your journey in the gym. But with 6 different workouts, it's not exactly easy to store all those individual plans in your head...
I've seen plenty of people walk around the gym cluelessly (and I've been there too), simply because they haven't planned their workout properly. This wastes time, affects your gains by increasing rest between exercises and I personally found that it reduced my confidence and enjoyment in the gym.
So, today I'll be going through the ways that I log and track my workouts as I do them and there's only one word that comes to mind... Strong.
Strong is a free app (there is a paid version too), where you can plan all of your sessions in advance, create templates for them and begin each planned workout in just a few seconds.
The app provides a range of different benefits, from working our your 1-rep max on recorded lifts, tracking where you've hit a PR on reps and/or weight and utilising timers so you stick to your rest periods.
Strong lets you record a set as a warm-up, drop set or a failure set. It has a catalogue of lifts for you choose from, but you can create your own under any name you'd like and it will still track all of your lift data under that name.
It will show you a full history of your sessions, as well as your progression on an individual exercise and track whether you reach your weekly goals for weight loss/gain, physical measurements, number of workouts and you can also log your calorie intake too.
If you have a smart watch, you can also install the app on there too. This means that there's no need to drag your phone around the gym with you. It's very easy to use and still makes use of rest timers, rep and weight logs and most of the other features you'll find on your phone.
Here's what the app looks like:
Now, I used to be part of the Notes-app crew - where I'd simply write down what I did or create my own tables, and don't get me wrong, there's nothing bad about that - if it's working for you, then stick with it.
But if you're finding that it's taking up a lot of time, or it may just be less convenient than an app like Strong, then perhaps give it a try.
I used to spend so much time making sure my workout was set up for the next day, writing down my sets as I did them and having to time my rest periods by staring a clock. Getting that back has only helped my gym experience, and it could help yours too!
PS: If you do try Strong and you're a fan of the idea but not the layout or design, there are other similar apps that you could try - Hevy, Fitlist, RepCount, StrongLifts and GymBook.