Recently I came across some articles about why Athletes should be tracked anywhere on the field. I think anyone practicing Strength Training to reach a specific goal should be tracking their efforts, so I decided to play this “game” and listed my 10 most important reasons everybody should use a tracking device when lifting. Any comment is welcome!
1 – Quantification: Metrics are purely objective. Combined with our sensations and our experience, which make the subjective part, they complete the reference we should rely on when trying to know ourselves better or when we’re trying to make a decision.
2 – Live Feedback : Among factors that contribute to empower the energy and the motivation we put into our lifting sessions, Live Feedback is one or is the most important one. As soon as your effort will be turned into a number, or a bar in a histogram, you want to pump that bar as high as it can go, no doubt about it! A study from Randell et Al. shows how training performance is enhanced by Real Live Feedback and how the monitored training group improved faster than the non monitored. Source: Effect of instantaneous performance feedback during 6 weeks of velocity-based resistance training on sport-specific performance tests. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 25(1), 87-93.
3 – Quantification and Metrics can immediately stimulates the competitive nature of many people, from the Athlete to the Average Joe. When competition kicks in, motivation rises and training becomes more fun. Turn your workouts into a game: every time it’s hammer time!!!
4 – #knowyourbeast: training requires a lot of energy and for many people it is a challenge. For many it represents the beginning of a journey that will improve self Awareness towards our body and our organism. We want to know what we are doing.
5 – it promotes Autoregulation : game time, education, family and relationship issues, night life, exaggerate work time.. life is full of unpredictable and variable inputs of stress that dramatically influences our daily conditions and to which we must account for when we’re looking for an optimized lifting program. “Auto regulation” is a way to manage the Intensity and the Volume of the Training Session by adjusting them to our body’s daily conditions. This leads to Prevention of failure,avoid overtraining and under training. Tracking help us stay on the optimal progressing path.
6 – It is Easy and Cool. Wearables are like a laboratory. Except they weight less than 40 grams and are available on your wrist.
7 – No more testing sessions, Testing is unreliable and most of it is a huge waste of time. Let your decision be based on tens or even hundreds and thousands of hours of training instead of one quick and hurried test.
The last three are my top 3 favourites:
8 – Strength by speeds : altho very effective, how complicated are Workout instructions with Percentage Based Training Style ?
Give me 3-4 sets of 2 maybe 4 reps @ 80% if you can even 85% of your max 1RM.
At leasts some questions arise: when should I do 3 instead of 4? Is 2 reps better than 4? Do I become stronger/faster when I use 85% instead of 80%?? By the way how much is my 1RM?
Instead, how about:
Try the maximum load you can hit between 1 and 1.1m/s every rep.
Stop your set when your speed drops below that zone and work for a total of 30 reps.
Spanish researchers Gonzàlez-Badillo and Sanchez-Medina demonstrated that the intensity of the exercise is directly correlated to the mean speed of your reps so you can target different Strength qualities by hitting the corresponding Speed Zones.
9 – Learning and Recommendations: Big Data, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence techniques applied to the Workout History help find connections and correlations in the Data. What if we could effortlessly keep our Training Diary and have some super expert analyst access it to find out what is hidden below the data? Eventually we will be able to improve Routine Design, Periodisation and workout sessions with suggestions on training frequency, exercise correlations and optimal conditions. Legend says one of the best secrets of Louie Simmons, arguably the best Strength Guru out there, is having an assistant coach keeping Official Stats about the lifting sessions happening into Westside Barbell Club just like it was a Basketball Game.
10 – Remote Training and Scouting By tracking Strength on a Cloud based system, the data is immediately available online everywhere in the world. If you’re a coach, this could allow you to check your trainees’ work even when they’re away from your gym. On the other side, if you’re a trainer you can design and optimise your training programs and make them available to your customers everywhere in the world.