How do you judge the effectiveness of your workouts/training program? It’s been ingrained in our culture that more is generally better: the more you sweat, the harder you’ve worked out, the better results you’ll get. This isn’t necessarily true. If your goal is strength, doing a bootcamp style program will be effective for likely just a short period of time (remember strength is the ability to produce force against a resistance). You’ll get stronger early on because you’ve never done anything before. It’s new, novel, and you haven’t adapted to it. So you get a little bit stronger in the first few weeks, a little bit sore(maybe alot), and maybe a bit more conditioned.
I can see the criticism now though. It’s a hard workout! How are you saying that all that work I just did didn’t get me stronger? And we come back to the original question: how do you measure the effectiveness of what you’re doing? Do you want to get better at doing bootcamps? Then you’ve chosen wisely. Do you want to get stronger? Well, there is a better way, one that involves a progressive increase in force production (weight on the bar). The main takeaway is this: if you have a specific goal in mind, the training program should move you closer towards that goal. We should see a measurable improvement in ability to know if it’s working. Simply using the “toughness” of a workout to gauge its effectiveness is a poor indicator because making people sweaty and tired is actually very easy. Getting people closer to their goals takes more work.