A steak dinner analogy is used to represent a solid well rounded exercise routine. Now, for my vegan friends you can insert your favorite vegan meal into this analogy too. The steak is the strength training portion to a routine. Strength training will provide a progressive resistance needed to build, repair, and maintain muscle mass. This is imperative to most occupations, all sports, and overall injury prevention. What comes in next is a side dish, a starch, and for health’s sake we’ll say it’s a baked sweet potato. The sweet potato is the warm up portion of the workout. The warm up is the range of motion, mobility section that will make for a better strength training session. Warm ups are suggested, but not exactly required. As the steak can be a stand alone meal, having the sweet potato provides nutrients and fiber to make the steak better digested. As having a sound warm up/program in place will allow your strength training session to “flow” better.
The dipping sauce to the meal is far from required and at times counterproductive. It brings flavor to an otherwise boring meal but with additional calories. Often times trainees make the mistake to think that low intensity steady state cardio is needed within a session, and in turn cuts the rest of the routine short in order to fit it in. Just like we make sure the sauce comes in, when we already would enjoy the meal with the sauce absent. An exercise routine has it’s “meat and potatoes”. Don’t get into the habit of flooding your steak with A1 sauce if the piece of steak is no good to begin with.