Intuitive Training?

Anyone intuitively train? I know there’s a ton of amazing programs out there but none specifically match up with my needs or wants for training.
I want to emphasize glute and back when I’m training and again, a lot of programs I’ve found don’t fit exactly what I’m looking for.
I’ve also been dealing with a rotator cuff problem for the past 3 years and so that’s another reason why I was thinking intuitive training is probably what’s best right now... but I still want to make progress 🤷🏼‍♀️

Anyone intuitively train or loosely follow a program and find that you were still able to make progress in lifts/aesthetics?


  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,842 Member
    I'd suggest that because people generally have NO to LITTLE knowledge or experience in lifting - the idea of intuitive training is what results in grabbing the pink dumbbells doing curls and incorrect tricep kickbacks after doing the elliptical.

    Horrible idea for your stated goal of making progress.

    Shoot - considering there are guys at the gym lifting for years and not making progress (if that might mean weight on the bar, and I've seen them), even experience is not a default route to success.

    If what you actually mean is getting knowledgable and making your own program - sure.
    Done several like that and make progress.
    But that ain't intuition.

    Little test - what's the primary synergist for the stiff-legged deadlift?
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,813 Member
    Example at my gym of intuitive training featuring two young guys from the nearby college.....

    What shall we do today?
    Erm, arms.
    OK, what do you do for arms?
    Erm, curls.
    Ok done that, what's next?
    Eh, um, hammer curls perhaps?
    Shall we have a go on the treadmill then?

    No I don't follow someone else's programme and I need some flexibility to manage injuries and take advantage of weather conditions (plus this year's gym closures and equipment restrictions) but my training is thoughtful not intuitive.
    Yes I make measurable progress.

    I'm pretty sure you don't actually mean intuitive in the sense of "instinctive, without conscious reasoning".
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 28,216 Member
    If you *don't* have the relevant knowledge and experience, but can't for whatever reason engage a well-qualified trainer, one option would be to pick a sound published program**, then ask in the Bodybuilding part of the forum for suggestions about how to work with or around your rotator cuff injuries, or what/whether to add for the back/glute emphasis you want.

    You'd get back a combination of amateur bro-vice from some, and knowledgeable input from a few people who hang out here who have long experience and good credentials themselves. Watch the conversation and click-reactions, and you'll quickly figure out whose advice is worth following.

    If you do have the relevant knowlege/experience, but want a sounding board, you could draft something out, post it, and ask for feedback.

    I understand that "intuitive training" is a term with some currency, but it's one that's so squishy (like "clean eating", say 😆) that it's nearly meaningless in practice. It can encompass anything from the sort of thing the guys above rightfully deprecate, to actual knowledgeable, insight-driven load management.

    ** If you don't have good options already in mind, consider some here: (You could also post on this thread, comment on your injuries/goals, and ask for suggestions about which programs would be most suitable.)

    Truth in advertising: Strength training is a topic on which I *don't* have enough knowledgeable experience to give advice. Better skills at exploiting available information resources for own benefit, though😉, and that's what I intend to be commenting on here.
  • Speakeasy76
    Speakeasy76 Posts: 961 Member
    So I'm definitely not an expert, but I know for me personally I don't trust myself with having enough knowledge to make my own plan. I'm the person who does the programs from the actual fitness professional s, but maybe didn't always give enough though to whether or not that was the right program for me.

    Having said that, over the years I've gathered more knowledge about strength training in general and how to progress while thinking about my own goals, body type and various injuries and chronic aches and pains . For the past year I've been very slowly reading the book "Glute Lab" by Bret Contreras (definitely look him up if you haven't if you want to focus on glute training). Obviously this book is geared towards glutes, but goes way beyond that in terms of overall strength training strategies AND how to design your own program with the enormous amount of knowledge in the book. This guy really knows his stuff but I also don't find him to be too extreme.

    I know this is such a cliche term, but I think it applies in terms of strength training as well :"If you fail to plan, then plan to fail."
  • DancingMoosie
    DancingMoosie Posts: 8,593 Member
    I'm going to second the Brett Contreras recommendation. He has several programs that are glute focused.
  • scott_90345
    scott_90345 Posts: 17 Member
    Intuitive training is nothing more than listening to your body. To train better you've to deeply feel the signal your body and mind sending to you. You can't feel those signal if you've not enough time to recognize those. The better you feel them the better your workout will be for your body. As you're struggling with your injury, so I'll not suggest you to follow any workout plan blindly.
  • NorthCascades
    NorthCascades Posts: 10,968 Member
    I would talk to a physical therapist about my injuries and goals.
  • SnifterPug
    SnifterPug Posts: 746 Member
    I trained along the lines of what you seem to mean by intuitive training for several years. I certainly made *some* progress. In fact I made a lot of progress in aerobic fitness. But I was basically spinning my wheels in terms of any strength gains. I did a good variety of things, not favouring any body part in particular, but had no discipline in terms of sets/reps/tempo. I just did what I felt like doing. I have high levels of motivation and enjoy the gym so I was not slacking and I don't regret any of it. In July I hired a personal trainer with the specific aim of improving my strength, and submitted to a full "homework" plan. (I have used various trainers for years but mainly for boxing pad work and although we did strength work in our sessions, too, I never wanted to go the fully planned route. More fool me.) I finally achieved the unassisted press up I had been chasing for 3 years. I am making good inroads towards the unassisted pull up I have also been chasing and I am confident that 2021 will be the year of the pull up.
  • NorthCascades
    NorthCascades Posts: 10,968 Member
    Weight lifting isn't really intuitive.
  • CipherZero
    CipherZero Posts: 1,418 Member
    "Intuitive training" is an oxymoron. Training has specific goals.