No Pain, No Gain!
It’s a catch cry repeated over and over again in the fitness industry. No pain, no gain! But is it really the way to go? The idea is simple. Push your body to get stronger, to get fitter. By pushing the body you are forcing it to adapt, and that results in muscle growth. But should that result in pain? Let’s start with what pain is. Pain is your body’s warning system. It’s telling you there is potential for damage, or even that damage has already occurred. So, ignore pain at your peril! Pain is the result of overloading the body, and this can have a disastrous impact. Overloaded mechanical systems collapse. Material stretched beyond its limit tears. None of this is great for your body! A broken body doesn’t train well! Ok, so if we want gain, but not pain, how do we achieve this? Now, it’s not as catchy, but the word we are looking for is discomfort. We want gain without injury. So, yes, we want to put some stress on our body, but we don’t want so much that we can’t come back and do it again a day or two later. We want to sweat. We want to push. We want to load the system, but we want to walk out in one piece and return ready to go!
A better mindset is: get comfortable with being uncomfortable!
Getting fit will be uncomfortable, particularly at first, but it shouldn’t be painful! We want to load, but not overload our body. We don’t want to push beyond what is reasonable, or useful. This means taking a thoughtful approach to training. An approach that is all about the long term benefit to the client. That means learning good technique from the get go. It means choosing the right exercise to fit a client’s need. It means looking at posture and age and exercise history. It means caring enough to do no harm! No one size fits all cookie cutter programs! It means being realistic about progress, and setting reasonable expectations! It may take a little longer, but it’s sustainable. So much of what we do here at PVH&F is fixing the damage made by poor training elsewhere. We undo the damage, and get our clients back on track.