Compare Yourself with Yourself

March 1, 2010

Have you worked out with a workout partner and the two of you did exactly the same exercises for exactly the same number of sets and repetitions over exactly the same period of time — say 3 months — yet your partner got results that were either far less or far beyond what you achieved?

Have no fear.  There’s likely nothing wrong with your partner or with you.  The difference in results achieved could be due entirely to the fact that you and your partner are simply different people, and different people will derive different results from the same training program.  No two people are exactly alike.

different people with different exercise results!

The principle that explains this is called “The Principle of Individual Differences”.  This principle is a common sense one.  In a nutshell, it says that all of us have different genetic blueprints, and because of this, while we all will get results from exercise, the rate and magnitude of the results will differ because of our genetics.

So, any well-designed physical fitness, weight loss, or muscle/strength building program will bring about results in any person that does the program.  However, genetics — the cards the person has been dealt — will play a large role, and perhaps THE largest role in what that person achieves in the way of results from the program.

Thus, it is possible for two people to do the same exercise program and one of the two might show twice more improvement than the other.  A dependency on one’s genetic makeup exists for much of one’s sensitivity in responding to aerobic and anaerobic (e.g. weight training) power training.

So, unless you’re in a sport that requires that you compare your training results to someone else, the best person to compete with is probably yourself.  Strive to beat your own past results.  Be the best you can be.


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One Response to “Compare Yourself with Yourself”

  1. Hi Darryl,

    thank you for this excellent reminder so we do not give up HOPE in our fitness regime.

    Indeed, one of the things which is different now that I’m older than my workout goals in my 20s is I indeed want to release excess weight. However, my goal is not to become a skinny minny. My goal is for a certain dress size, to have a good physique (I have my own short hand), to be fit, able to hike as I want to, and to enjoy a healthy active LIFESTYLE.

    It’s more about the becoming and the living out of it than the end result moment.

    Thanks for these excellent fitness reminders!

    Happy Dating and Relationships,

    April Braswell
    Boomer Dating Expert and Online Dating Coach



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