I’ll be the first to admit it.
I’ve pushed certain fitness dogma in a big way.
When I dove headfirst into Starting Strength, I thought it was the best thing ever invented.
I thought everyone should exclusively do what I was doing.
Squat, Press, Bench, Deadlift.
3 sets of 5.
I thought it was perfect.
Everyone needs to be strong.
Strong is functional.
Starting Strength makes you strong.
Don’t get me wrong, I think Starting Strength is a great program, but I no longer believe it is the only program that should exist.
But why am I writing this today?
I was in the gym this morning, doing a high-low side chop as part of the MAPS Performance program that I’m following right now.
As I was doing this chop, I had a thought…
“There are probably better exercises I could be doing for this.”
After all, I’m familiar with the BRIG-20 since I read his book, and this chop was not one of the exercises.
One of the worst things that I’ve done lately is jump from program to program, looking for the perfect routine.
And frankly, my results are reflective of this (because they suck).
I told myself that I would see this program through to the end of the 12 weeks that it’s scheduled for.
But even so… I found myself tempted to move to something else after just over 1 week!
After all, the first 3 week phase is strength based.
Heavy weight, low reps.
I feel like I need hypertrophy right now.
But I managed to discipline myself!
Because here’s the thing… I’m acting as though there is some kind of program that’s going to turn me into some kind of fitness model overnight.
Some magic exercise that’s going to overcome a couple of months of being sedentary.
But that’s ridiculous.
Unless you’re a bodybuilder or fitness competitor, or some other super high-level athlete, searching for the “perfect” program is probably a waste of time.
All you (and I) need to do is pick a program and see it through to the end.
The only “secret” is consistency.
Are there exercises and programs that might be “better” than what you’re currently doing?
There’s no reason that you can’t get GREAT results from giving everything you have to the program you’re using right now.
So this is my TL/DR; advice to you today:
Stop program hopping and commit to whatever it is you’ve got RIGHT NOW. Finish it.
Then choose your next program based on what you feel like you should do next.
This is going to give you much better progress than doing a week or two on a program and switching to another one after that.
Even cookie cutter programs you buy online (not knocking them, I’ve bought tons) are composed of phases/cycles, under the assumption that you’ll stick with them so that the later phases of the program can build off the earlier ones.
If you cut the program off early, you’re missing out on the potential benefit.
At some point, you felt like that program was worth buying.
Run it to the end and you’ll probably be surprised at the progress you make!