My goal as a trainer is to help my clients reach their fitness goals as timely as possible. And a huge part of that process involves hard work, dedication, and consistency. But one thing many people new to fitness don't understand is the importance of progression!

Progression means starting with the basics and not moving to the next level until ready!

Almost 90 percent of the time I have to scale or modify every workout for members who are new to strength and conditioning class. Initially, I always get awkward expressions followed with the same reply: "This isn't going to be challenging enough for me."

Then, after going through the workout, they realize why it was necessary to start slow. The most basic exercises might look easy on the board, but when the body is unconditioned, they can be really difficult.

The human body is one of the most highly adaptive mechanisms on the planet. With every training session it will get stronger and ultimately perform better.

But it's so critical to not go from zero to 60 in one day! Don't expect to run a mile in under six minutes your first session if you've been a couch potato all spring. That's when injury and discouragement happens. Reaching your fitness goals comes through preparation.

Sometimes it can be a big challenge to figure out how hard to push or when to slow down. Training intensity varies from person to person. Regardless of your fitness level, it's very important to focus on consistent movement mechanics. When form gets sloppy, it's either time to use less weight, adjust to a more simple movement (like going from box jumps to step ups), or to just stop the activity all together.

Keep in mind the intensity that increases your fitness is hard to keep up with past for longer than 45 minutes or an hour. So if you feel strong, keep going, but don't over do it!

And don't be afraid to seek assistance from a licensed professional. There are some great trainers in gyms everywhere who are willing to help you! If your trainer simplifies things in the early stages of your program, it's not to pick on you. It just means they care for your safety!

Take it step by step and I promise you will get to where you want to be right on time.

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