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A Glossary Of Fitness Training Terms

Author: Train Smart Fitness & Health | | Categories: Health Improvement Programs , Online Personal Training , Personal Fitness Trainer


Every industry has its own language and terms. These words and phrases can be confusing to individuals who are not part of the daily operations of a specific sector, and the fitness business is no exception.

To help you understand the terms, acronyms, and phrases regularly used when training with a fitness coach, Train Smart Fitness & Health has created this handy reference guide. Here you’ll find valuable information allowing you to comprehend and communicate your needs effectively.

This means repetitions. It refers to the number of times that you would complete a certain movement.

This refers to the total number of reps that you are to perform before resting and also how many times you are to perform those reps again. For example, two sets of fifteen reps mean that you would perform fifteen reps, rest, then perform fifteen reps again.

This is the portion of the rep or movement when the targeted muscle group is lengthening under tension. For example, when lowering the weight in a Biceps Curl, your biceps are stretching under tension. When lowering your body towards the floor in a Push-Up, your pecs and triceps are stretching under tension.

This is the portion of the rep or movement when the targeted muscle group is shortening under tension. For example, when raising the weight in the Biceps Curl, your biceps are shortening under tension. When pushing your body away from the floor in a Push-Up, your pecs and triceps shorten under tension.

This refers to when you pause during a rep, that is at the top or bottom of a Curl or Push Up, or an exercise that requires you to hold a challenging static position like a Plank or Wall Sit. The muscle stays the same length while under tension.

Just as a musician has a specific speed at which they perform their song, so do we when exercising. Tempo is the pace at which we must complete the rep. That is three-one-one-one. The first number denotes the eccentric portion of the movement or when the targeted muscle group is lengthening under tension that is lowering the weight on a three count. The second number denotes how long to pause after lowering the weight that is for one second. The third number denotes the concentric portion of the movement or when the targeted muscle group is shortening under tension that is while lifting the weight in one second. The fourth number denotes how long to pause after lifting the weight that is for one second.

This stands for As Many Reps As Possible. Just as the phrase suggests, you would perform as many reps as you can of the exercise until either your form breaks down or you physically can’t perform another rep. These are used most often in CrossFit-style or Conditioning Workouts.

This refers to the weight that your body will be working against. Resistance can come in many forms like dumbbells, barbells, bands, kettlebells, a partner, or your bodyweight.

This stands for Basal Metabolic Rate. It is the amount of energy that your body requires at rest to perform its basic functions like pumping blood throughout the body and breathing. Think of it as the amount of energy your body uses just to keep the lights on. This is where most of your energy goes.

Progressive overload
To put it simply, it means doing more over time. Progressive overload is the most important law in strength training. It can come in many forms, here are a few:
a. Lifting more weight at the same number of reps
b. Lifting the same weight for more reps
c. Lifting the same weight for the same reps while at a lower bodyweight

This stands for High-Intensity Interval Training. It consists of brief intervals of high-intensity (think an all-out effort) exercise alternated with short intervals of low-intensity exercise. For example, for twenty seconds, you engage in an all-out Sprint or Burpees, alternated with twenty seconds of Walking. All of this can be repeated about eight times.

Your Core is made up of much more than just the six-pack muscles. It includes the abdominals, lower back muscles, diaphragm, pelvic floor, and muscles of the hips.

Body composition
This refers to how much fat mass versus how much fat-free mass (muscles, bones, water) you have.

For more insights on exercising and fitness, reach out to Train Smart Fitness & Health. I specialize in in-home personal training and online personal training to enable people to live a healthier lifestyle. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, build muscle, train for a sport, short on time, don’t have the equipment, are dealing with financial difficulties, or are just lacking motivation. I’ve been there and dealt with those issues, and I’ve helped people in those and other situations find solutions. Moreover, as an experienced professional with education and training in the Science in Kinesiology, Fitness Assessment and Exercise Counselling, I have what it takes to train all sorts of people, from kids to adults, seniors, students, athletes, business owners, and those with complex health conditions. I serve clients all across Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, Mono, Aurora, Orangeville, Caledon, Vaughan, Markham, Halton Hills, Guelph, Milton, Oakville, Burlington, Hamilton and Cambridge, Ontario.

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