Training Age

Did you know that you have a training age? It’s how long you have been consistently training. My training age is 15 years. I started working out in my driveway with my uncle during the summer when I was 15. After that, I did some body building (because that was all there was back then) then eventually joined a formal strength and conditioning program with a coach and never looked back (except that year that I didn’t step into a gym, but that’s a story for another day).

Your training age dictates how you will progress and what you can do in order to progress. Someone with a low training age will develop strength and athleticism regardless of what the training is. Any sort of stimulus is good when you have a young training age. Our bodies love to adapt. This is a chance to get a lot of quality reps in, under maximum load, to groove the proper movement patterns.

As your training age grows, you'll have a more difficult time building strength, muscle or endurance. Your body doesn’t like to adapt like it did when your training age was younger. Training will need to become more formalized to ensure proper progression and management of stress. You’ll need to spend more time at high percentage lifts and manage your training volume.

Once you crack 12 or 13 years, things begin to change again. You start to get away with more days off and less frequent maximum effort lifts. You’ll hang on to strength because you’ve been adapting to it for a long time. You’ve made positive changes. Increasing strength or endurance takes a specialized approach at this point. Doing the minimum will allow you to maintain, but concentrated effort will be required to see a deadlift PR.

Strength and conditioning is a lifetime pursuit. The principles will stay the same, but the way you adapt will continue to evolve. Just be sure to stick with something long enough to earn a training age.

Justin Miner


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