Exercise Selection & How to Choose the Best Training Style For You:
Each and every person has their own unique anatomy and body shape and understanding how this effects your goals when it comes to training and diet is so important. What works for your gym buddy may not work for you and vice versa. Genetics is one of the leading variables when It comes to changing your body shape through gaining strength and building muscle and this is why it is so important to find a program with suitable exercises tailored to you and your physical traits. Individual responses to diet and exercise can vary dramatically and below I will outline a number of factors to consider when it comes to this:
Cardio-Appetite for Fat Loss:
Here you need to monitor how your appetite responds to doing low impact steady state cardio. If you find your appetite greatly increases after doing 40 minutes cardio and you are starving afterwards maybe this is not the best option for you. Some people may overcompensate calories burned during the session and overeat afterwards leading to higher calories overall. EG. (You burn 150 calories on the cross trainer but have a 250-calorie snack afterwards). This leads to a 100-calorie surplus which may hinder your overall goals. However, if you tend to go the opposite way and some steady state cardio suppresses your appetite slightly then maybe this option may suit your weight loss goals more.
NEAT: Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis
This refers to all the physical activity you do throughout the day and sometimes this can be just as important as exercise when it comes to energy expenditure. If you find that exercise is reducing your overall NEAT (Go to a 45 minute gym class and sit on the couch for the rest of the day) then maybe this is having a negative impact on your goals. However, if you feel more energised after the gym class and can maintain a high NEAT level then this may be more suitable for you.
Cardio & Strength Training
Strength training and setting Personal Bests in the weights area takes a lot of energy, focus and strength so anything that may interfere with that should more or less be omitted depending on your goal. If you want to transform your physique well then weights are the way to go and the way to do this is through progressive overload (increasing volume/load/reps/sets) overtime. However, if you find yourself beat up after an hour run on the treadmill and the next day you try to set a PB Deadlift then this is going to have a negative impact on your lift.
Program Design for YOU
Like I have mentioned above each one of us is unique in genetics so it is so important to consider how YOU respond individually to changes in diet and training in order to optimize the best program to fit your needs and goals. As well as genetics your bodies unique anatomy will determine how you perform certain exercises and which exercises will suit you. For example if you struggle to get deep with your squat because your hips have a limited ROM (Range of Motion) then don’t go deep just because you have read somewhere that you HAVE to go deep. Just go as deep as your body naturally allows. Individuals lacking mobility in certain areas that repeatedly go beyond what their body allows often tend to create more problems down the line in their hips, back and shoulders.
To conclude genetics and your bodies individual anatomy should be a leading factor when following a diet and training plan. There is no one size fits all and just because research suggests that (Y) is the most beneficial way to do something does not mean that it is suitable for you. It is important to experiment and figure out what works best for you and what variables best impact your ability to gain strength, build muscle and lose body fat.