There are many different options when it comes to training and it really depends on your end goals which way you should go.  Many gyms will sell you on small group training and others with large group team training, but do you know why? Do you know the difference or how each can help you achieve your fitness goals?

Let’s process on a high level…

First, a quick overview of training variations. There are: traditional training methods, circuits, drop sets, supersets, tri-sets, complexes, pyramids, horizontal, vertical, metabolic resistance training, high intensity interval training, cardio, etc. Then you have: set variations, rep variations, tempo variations, rest intervals, training volume and frequency. Let’s not forget about phases: foundation, hypertrophy, strength, strength endurance, power, power endurance, loading vs de-loading, and recovery. The list goes on-and-on, and is summarized under the term, “strength and conditioning.”

As you can see, the programming variations can be endless and determining how to get you the best results really requires a lot of thought and due diligence. Your body hates when things are difficult, so it adapts as quickly as possible to make things less difficult. In other words, what works, only works for a short-period of time. The good news is that those adaptations are what we call results. This is exactly why, unless you are going to spend hours and hours every month studying exercise science, it’s wise to invest in a great coaching team to take the thought process out of it and maximize your results.

Side note; there isn’t really such a thing as a “fat loss” workout program. What I mean by that is, fat loss is the result of training and eating right. Regardless of whether you’re doing pure strength training, metabolic conditioning, or training to add muscle, all should positively affect fat loss… as long as your program is consistently changing. For any long-term training program to be effective, it must be consistent, but consistently diverse. That means performing the same exercises with slight variations consistently, but continually changing the workout format to prevent the body from either breaking down and/or becoming so efficient at a specific training method that it doesn’t cause positive adaptation (AKA RESULTS).

Now back to small group training vs. team training. Team training or boot camp is designed with two specific goals in mind: increase metabolic function, and fun. It provides a fun team environment, with the goal of creating that “metabolic burn,” otherwise known as the conditioning part of “strength and conditioning.” While the workouts and exercises vary, the training does not vary much from a programming perspective. For this reason, team training is great for getting short-term results, but not great as a stand-alone, long-term training program, because your body will quickly adapt. The team training we offer at Actualize is our 30-minute HIIT class.

Small group training on the other hand is very interchangeable and diverse. As a whole, we at Actualize try to take our small group training clients through a variety of training phases to provide variety and enhance results. For instance, our programming offers many different phases and focuses (as mentioned above). Sometimes we focus on hypertrophy with the goal of building muscle. Other times we focus on strength, power or endurance. And we even provide a restorative and corrective class called Restore to help you pre-emptively restore and correct.

Each of these training phases also includes a metabolic element, with built-in flexibility/stability elements. Remember, there is no such thing as a “fat loss” workout program. As you can see, the goal of each one of these phases is not designed around fat loss. However, because each phase is different, the variation keeps the body in a constant state of adaptation, and there offers the ability for consistent progress toward actualizing your goals over time.

Another side note; if your goal is “fat loss” and you’re not experiencing the results you desire—and you’re plugging-in and working hard in our small group training classes—it’s most likely due to your diet. Remember, you have an assigned Actualize Coach who’s job is to work with you 1-on-1 and hold you relationally accountable to your goals. Make your appointment today to meet with your coach!

So, small group training vs team training. What do you need to know?

Team training does not carry enough flexibility and diversity to be a long-term, stand-alone program, as results will diminish. Team training is awesome for short-term results or as a metabolic aspect of a long-term program.

Small group training on the other hand varies often and can be a stand-alone, long-term training solution for continued results.

A combination of both team training (our HIIT classes) and small group training (our Transformation classes; and our Girl Gains & Guy Gains groups)  can also be an effective long-term approach as it will contain both aspects of strength and conditioning.

Coach Blaine

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Actualize Sports & Fitness is North Central Washington’s premier performance enhancement training, health and nutrition, and mental achievement coaching center. We exist to educate, encourage and empower Actualize Sports (competitive athletes, teams & coaches) & Actualize Fitness (fitness enthusiasts of all ages & abilities) clients to actualize their unique purpose and potential in athletics, fitness and life.

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