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5 Golden Rules To Get Amazing Results From Any Workout

You can easily look up a workout online that will help you achieve your athletic goals, but there are a few extremely important things you need to do to get the most out of any workout you follow.

I’m going to share with you the 5 key training principles that allowed me to gain 8 inches on my vertical in 3 months during my freshman year of college, and they will help you whether you are a one foot or two foot jumper.

These principles also helped me gain 35 pounds of muscle in 4 months during the summer after my sophomore year of college.

Side note: I wouldn’t recommend gaining 35 pounds for anyone younger than 15 years of age or so.

Like I said, these tips apply to any workout.

So whether you’re trying to jump higher or gain muscle, settle in and let’s get started.

Note: if you’re interested in jumping higher check out my workout page (http://www.flightbasketball.com/vertical-jump/) for specific training routines

The Five Golden Rules

Progressive Overload

Progressive overload is one of those terms that sounds like something a scientist would use, but it’s really a straightforward principle.

Here is the rule:

Each week, you need to add either more reps or more weight to each exercise during your workout.

For example, let’s say that you are doing squats and last week you did 3 sets at 10 reps of 120 pounds.

This week, you should do one of the following:

  1. 3 sets at 11 reps of 120 pounds
  2. 3 sets at 10 reps of 125 pounds

progressive overloadNotice how in the first option we added one more rep to each set while keeping the weight the same.

In the second option we added 5 more pounds while keeping the reps the same. You can choose either of these options.

I can’t emphasize enough how important this principle is to your success. I guarantee that the people you see in the gym every week who aren’t making progress are not adhering to this rule.

Forcing your body to do more work each week, even though it’s just a little bit, will force you to build muscle and blast through plateaus. You should try to do this for each exercise in your workout.

If you can’t add a rep or more weight it’s likely due to lacking nutritional resources, which brings me to my next principle…

Progressive Nutrition

healthy foodThis is very similar to progressive overload except that in this case we are applying it to our nutrition, and it’s a tip I figured out through my own training and lots of reading.

Note that the numbers I provide below may vary a bit between people, but the principle stays the same.

Here is how the rule works if you’re trying to add muscle to your body:

As you gain more muscle mass, you need to take in more calories in order to see continued growth

In my case, I like to follow the following pattern – for every 5 pounds of weight I gained I took in an additional 250 calories per day. This is what allowed me to add 35 pounds of muscle in 4 months.

Let’s say that I start out at 180 pounds on a 2000 calorie/day diet and I want to get up to 200 pounds.

In order to do that, you should be eating the following caloric quantities:

  1. 180 pounds – 2000 calories/day
  2. 185 pounds – 2250 calories/day
  3. 190 pounds – 2500 calories/day
  4. 195 pounds – 2750 calories/day
  5. 200 pounds – 3000 calories/day

The additional calories you take in will help support the mass you’re adding to your frame. If you were to keep your calories consistent it’s likely you will plateau in the gym.

I didn’t exactly count calories while doing this. It was more about getting a feel for how much I ate each day. You will get better at this with time.

Bear in mind that this rule mainly applies to people who are looking to gain muscle mass.

If you want to maintain your weight or even lose it, you’ll have to maintain your calories or decrease them, respectively.

Also, don’t just eat garbage food like McDonald’s in order to add calories. Focus on clean foods like fruits, vegetables, and protein from chicken, eggs, and lean beef.

Maximum Intensity

This applies to every set and rep of every exercise you do. Here’s the rule:

Give 100% effort on every rep and set of every exercise

hafthor bjornsson

You don’t have to lift as much as Hafthor…

I know I basically just repeated myself, but this rule bears repeating. I see so many people working out and only giving it half effort.

This applies to weight training as well as plyometric training (lower and upper body).

These are the kinds of people who are going to go nowhere in their training.

Write Everything Down

One of the best things I started doing when I went to the gym was bringing a pen and paper with me.

Here is the rule I follow:

Write down every exercise, set, rep, and weight for every single workout

pen and paperThis will help you ensure that you are sticking to the progressive overload rule.

You might think that you’ll be able to remember how much weight you lifted or how many sets you did, but trust me, you’ll forget by the time a week rolls by.

When the margin for progress is only an additional few pounds or one extra rep you need to be precise in your tracking.

Before I started bringing a pen and paper with me to the gym it took me a very long time to realize that I was actually doing the exact same workout every week.

This was keeping me from making any progress with my training.

Remember, doing the exact same workout every week is not going to get you quick and measurable results. It’s only going to get you stuck on a plateau.

More Rest, More Results

A lot of people think that you need to workout every day to see good results.

arnold schwarzenegger

Arnold approves

I put that theory to rest when I gained 35 pounds of muscle only working out 3 days per week. Once again, here is the rule I follow:

Only workout a maximum of 4 days per week with at least one day of rest in between each workout

You’ll be amazed at how little time you need to spend in the gym to see amazing results.

Taking time off between workouts allows your body to recover and prepare itself for the next day. If you fail to do this it’s likely that you will experience overtraining.

Overtraining is usually accompanied by a loss in strength or energy. If you feel weak or if you’re in pain, take a break!

Feel free to do light aerobics or play a game of pickup basketball on your days off. You don’t have to sit on the couch.

How To Jump Higher In Record Time – Step By Step

how to jump higherJumping higher may seem like an impossible task, but it really just comes down to a few simple principles. In this article, I’m going to cover the key things that you need to focus on if you want to improve your leaping ability.

If you incorporate these steps into your training I can pretty much guarantee that you will see gains in record time!

Use the navigation on the left to jump to a specific section of the article. If you have questions, please feel free to contact me.

Progressive Overload

Progressive overload is actually a term that I have borrowed from the bodybuilding world. What it basically means is that with each workout you need to be lifting more weight or doing more reps.

For example, let’s say that during week one I did squats using a weight of 125 pounds. I performed 3 sets for 10 reps. If i utilize the technique of progressive overload then my workout chart should look like the following.

Squat Chart

Squat example using progressive overload.
WeekExerciseWeightSetsReps
1Squat125310
2Squat125311
3Squat130310
4Squat130311

As you can see, one of the three aspects of the exercise (weight, sets, reps) needs to increase every week.

Keep in mind that if you increase the weight of an exercise it is ok to reduce the number of reps to a manageable level. You can see an example of this during the transition between week 2 and 3.

Your workout chart would obviously have more exercises than this each week, but this squat example should give you an idea of how to manage your exercises.

One more tip for you is to bring a pen and paper with you to the gym. Write down each weight, set, and rep you do for every exercise. I know you think you can remember what you did the previous week in the gym, but trust me, it’s a lot harder than you think. Pen and paper work wonders.

Healthy Diet

good dietThis one is pretty obvious, but it bears repeating since I see so many people neglecting their diet during their jump training.

When you are trying to jump higher you are going to be working out quite a bit. This means that you are going to be breaking down your muscles, and muscle fibers need proper nutrients to regenerate properly.

If you have a proper diet you’ll gain strength each week. For most guys/girls who aren’t seeing results, it’s almost always due to either poor diet or a lack of progressive overload.

You should aim to eat about 1g of protein per pound of body weight.

Also try to avoid sugary foods such as candy and drinks like pop/soda. Avoid high carbohydrate foods as well such as pasta. These foods aren’t good for you in general, but they also tend to make you gain weight. If you add fat to your body it’s going to be much harder to add inches to your vertical jump.

vertical jump dietIf you’re having trouble keeping up your diet due to time constraints, or you just don’t like shopping, try adding a protein supplement to your diet. They make it much easier for you to meet your daily protein requirements.

I highly recommend 100% Optimum Whey protein. It tastes good and it is easy on the stomach. Some people have trouble digesting some protein supplements, so look for protein powders that rapidly digest (like Optimum) if you are having stomach issues.

Plyometric Exercises

Plyometrics are designed to improve your body’s ability to use its strength and get your body off the ground. Most plyo exercises are designed to be explosive to train your body to be explosive.

jump higherIf you want to jump higher you’re going to have to use plyos in your workouts. These are the kinds of exercises that guys like Lebron and MJ spend their time doing.

There are different exercises for your upper and lower body. As you might guess, the lower body exercises are going to have the most impact on your jumping ability.

When you do plyos your emphasis should be to jump as high as you possibly can when doing your lower body workout. Give each exercise 100% of your effort. If you don’t, you’re not going to see any gains.

Again, you should be using progressive overload for these. If you do 25 ankle bounces during week 1, try doing 30 the next week. If you get up to 50 reps try doing them with light weights in your hands.

This is just one example but this should give you an idea of how to create your workout.

Strength Training

The non-plyometric portion of your workout should be dedicated to strength training. This means doing weight lifting exercises to improve your overall strength.

Squats, deadlifts, leg extensions, and slow calf raises are great for improving your strength.

If you want to focus on speed as well, try to incorporate sprints and quad training into your routine.

Using progressive overload is extremely important for improving strength. If you are not increasing the amount of weight or the number of reps, you’re going to find that you won’t see any gains.

I would only recommend doing these exercises one time per week. Performing something like squats twice per week is usually not beneficial. In fact, it can actually cause you to lose inches on your vertical.

The reason that doing a heavy lift like squats twice per week can hurt you is that you’re basically over training. Your body will need time to recover from such a strenuous exercise, so keep that in mind as you do your workouts.

Use A Proven Program

I know I talk about this a lot on this site, but it is incredibly helpful if you can follow a step by step plan to improve your vertical jump. One of the best ways to do this is to use a program that another successful athlete has followed.

Jacob Hiller (who has a 42 inch vertical) created a program called the Jump Manual. It contains everything you need to increase your vertical jump quickly.

You do not need to buy a program, but if you want a system to follow that is proven to get results I highly recommend the Jump Manual.

If you follow the tips I’ve outlined above I can pretty much guarantee that you will jump higher. If you have questions please contact me.

Pat