As Mark Lauren (2011) says in his book that one of the main factors to achieve the results in training is sufficient efficiency of the workout.Therefore the question is: How much you are able to challenge yourself? It is a different thing to follow-up the program and do the workouts with no thoughts THAN follow-up exactly the same program with an idea, that what muscles are trained, how those are trained and recruited to work, and what is the ultimate goal for training.
HOW IS SUFFICIENT EFFICIENCY DEFINED?
Well, there are four principles set for the physical activity effects which also set the minimum level for your challenge. Those are overload, progressiveness, specificity and reversibility that occur due to physical activity. These principles are also approved by Finnish UKK Institute which is health research and expertise center maintained by Condition Institute Foundation of Urho Kekkonen.
Overload is about creating a momentarily greater load for organism than they have been used to for example getting winded when walking. Progressiveness is a result of development which means that the threshold of physiological overload has increased e.g. you need to run to get winded. Specificity means that the development is affecting to overloaded organism e.g. respiratory system. Reversibility refers to effects of underload as rest and sleep to lower the respiration.
Sufficient effiency means momentarily overloading your organism.
Indeed, those are the principles for physical activity effects. However, the most important factors to affect these principles are power, duration, frequency and type of training which influence to the relation of physical activity and rest. Actually, the meaning of reversibility is extremely important for performance. After a workout, performance temporarily decreases, because the body recovers from the strain. After healing performance begins to recover and rises even higher level than in the beginning of a workout. This phase is called supercompensation which is an optimal time for new workout to increase your performance even more and keep your development curve positive. However, our performance level returns back to the same level as in the beginning or even lower if supercompensation phase is not utilized and organisms are not overloaded again.
HOW SUPERCOMPENSATION PHASE CAN BE DEFINED?
Position of supercompensation is a sum of workouts, nutrition and rest. So keeping track of each factor helps you to learn your body and understand what kind of rest and nutrition you need after each workout and what is optimal training frequency for you. Workouts varies by their power, duration, and type of training, strength or endurance training. High power training usually recruits more muscle fibers and increases oxygen debt so the strain is pretty high and recruited muscles need a day or two to recover from it and to fill oxygen storages. In long duration training oxygen debt doesn’t increase as high as in high power training and since the energy production mechanism is different the recovery happens faster. Of course, the recovery depends on the training power as well. For strength training, it is typical that it brakes more protein bridges in muscle than endurance training, which takes more time to recover.
Supercompensation is a sum of workouts, nutrition and rest.
Nutrients are our building materials so for that reason a varied and sufficient diet is important since it helps our body to recover. Of course the diet varies based on your other goals, but general nutrition recommendations to have 4-5 diverse meals per day and drink water for thirst are good rules to start with. As a conclusion, having a good balance between workouts, rest and nutrients help to improve your performance.
HOW DOES MPOWER HELP YOU TO ACHIEVE THE RESULTS?
In my opinion, finding the balance between workouts and rest is sometimes pretty complicated. Keeping track about my nutritions is more simple, since during rest days I eat as my normal calory consumption requires and during the training days I eat more depending on the power, duration, type and assumed calory consumption of training. Difficult thing for me is to find the correct days for me to do strength training. Strength training increases your power production capability which is reflected in the EMGsignal that Mpower measures. So with help of Mpower I have been able to measure my muscles activity and follow my muscles overload level and compare it my earlier results. I am able to see has progressiveness realized in my results and has the threshold, my muscles activation level, increased. With Mpower I can study specifically my muscles and the fatigue value gives me information about my recovery.
I know that it probably sounded like a sales pitch and perhaps it was, partly… But from my own experience I can sincerely say that Mpower helped me to train more efficiently in our Booty Challenge. It kept me motivated during the challenge, but most of all it helped me to stay focused when training. Since activation of every routine and set was recorded, I couldn’t fool myself and slack my last sets even though I sometimes wanted to!
If you are a bit lazy as I am and it is difficult for you to get out of your comfort zone, Mpower encourages you to continue! Sometimes it even seems that the application is yelling to you: “Come on, you can do much better. You are not even trying!” after a bad workout or routine. In addition, with help of Mpower you get black on white about your development curve and it’s easier for you to see what the right actions are for you to achieve positive trend line in your development.
Mpower motivates you and teaches you to feel your body!
Lauren, M. (2011) You Are Your Own Gym: The Bible of Bodyweight Exercises. Ballantine Books Trade Paperback Edition.
Finnish UKK Institute (2016) Principles for Physical Activity Effects. Available from: http://www.ukkinstituutti.fi/en [Last accessed: 07/10/2016]
The National Nutrition Council of Finland (2016) National Nutrition Recommendations. Avalable from: http://www.ravitsemusneuvottelukunta.fi/portal/en/ [Last accessed: 07/10/2016]