My Top 9 Training Tips & Philosophies

Like you, I’m always looking to create an edge at the gym. I want my fitness dialed-in to perfection so I can make the most of every ounce of sweat when I train (and you know how much I LOVE training).

I recently took to TD TV / Facebook LIVE to reveal — for the first time EVER — my Top 9 Training Philosophies & Tips.

These come from 20+ years in the trenches training weekend warriors, professional athletes, up-and-coming young bucks, fitness enthusiasts, grandmas and grandpas, elite executives, and even other fit pros. Pop your grey hoodie on, snap your band, and #GetUrMindRight as we go deep on my Top 9 Training Philosophies & Tips thanks to my friends from CarnoSyn®.

*View my Top Training Tips video that inspired this blog HERE.*

*View my Facebook LIVE on this topic — including Q&A on training — HERE.*

TD’s Top 9 Training Philosophies & Tips:

#1. Be Strong From Feet To Fingertips:

From left to right and front to back, it’s imperative you train your entire body. This means training in all three planes of motion (don’t forget those rotational movements!), incorporating unilateral exercises, crushing your core, and more.

#2. Your Only As Strong As Your Weakest Link:

With that, your only as efficient as your worst movement. Your goal should be to eliminate weaknesses by turning them into strengths. Instead of avoiding those difficult exercises and problem areas you tend to struggle with (typically, those are your weak links), double down on them!

#3. Train From The Ground Up:

Biggest, faster, and stronger starts with your foundation. Kick off your training from the bottom up by working hard on your lower half. Yup, train the legs, folks! Of course, I love the arm farm, but the lower body can’t be overlooked! Deadlifts (try ‘em with a trap bar to give your spine some relief), squats, and lunges are great places to start.

#4. Intensity and Focus Are Crucial Components To Success:

It doesn’t matter how long you train. You can get a boatload of benefits from a quick 20-minute workout simply by kicking up the intensity and focus. You DON’T need to hit the gym for hours on end. You just need to get after it! Need help measuring effort? I suggest getting a heart rate tracker. We use MyZone trackers here at Fitness Quest 10 and they’ve made a huge IMPACT on our clients.

#5. Consistency Is Key:

You can’t expect results without staying committed. I suggest consistently committing to training 3-5 times per week depending on your goals. And again, this isn’t a 1-week thing. This is a 50+-weeks-per-year kinda thing. P.S. The same goes for nutrition :).

#6. You Grow When You Rest:

While consistency is crucial, you should take at least 1 day off per week to rest. Why? You grow when you rest and R&R is a MUST for your muscles and your mind. Commit to ample sleep and recovery, and I assure you, you’ll get the growth you desire.

#7. Set Goals And Work Towards Them:

Goals give you extra motivation and accountability. Without them, you’re training aimlessly. With them, your “why” is defined and you will achieve your goals. If you need an additional push (or a little extra EDGE), grab a training partner or hire a coach to help you define and reach those goals.

#8. GetUrMindRight:

Yeah, you know what it is. Mindset matters, my friends. Snap your band, suck it up, and let’s go baby!!! You should always get your mind right, but it’s particularly important when you’re training for that extra rep and need that extra 1%.

#9. Strategically Use Supplements:

If your nutrition is right, you can add in some supplements. Stick with the staples. I’m a big fan of Beta-Alanine pre-workout (CarnoSyn® has the best stuff on the market) and whey protein post-workout (my friends at Ascent Protein keep it clean). I consider these supplements a little and then some when it comes to training. But remember, supplements are just that; they should only SUPPLEMENT great nutrition.

I hope these tips motivate you to take your training up a notch. As always, train hard, eat right, & live inspired!

Here are a few of the top questions I received during my Facebook LIVE session on the topic of training:

#1. Can I use Beta-Alanine every day?

Yes. Two scoops per day is equivalent to just over 3 grams per day, which is what you need to maximize pre-workout Beta-Alanine. Check your label for CarnoSyn® Beta-Alanine so you know you’re getting the best stuff. Most of you probably take it already without knowing it!

#2. What time of day is the best to train?

Anytime. Whenever you feel rocket fuel pumping through your body, hit the trenches.

I do fasted cardio early in the morning then get after the iron later in the day. But honestly, there’s no WRONG time to train. 9am, 9pm… it’s always a good time!

#3. What are the best ways to train for weight loss?

Circuit training, HIIT, weight training, and cardio can all impact weight loss, but a well-rounded workout routine is a must. That said, ladies, please don’t fear the weights. I promise you a little iron will blast fat without getting you big and bulky (genetics have your back). Beyond the training, be sure you’re eating clean and lean.

P.S. Just as I went deep on my training philosophies here, I also went deep on my Nutrition Philosophies HERE. Huge thanks to my friends from CarnoSyn® for helping me out with this epic video to help you create your EDGE by fueling properly!

About the Author

Todd Durkin, MA, CSCS, is an internationally-recognized performance trainer, bodyworker, speaker, author, and owner of award-winning gym Fitness Quest 10 in San Diego, CA (one of the Top 10 Gyms in the U.S.). His outstanding team of 38 professionals delivers extraordinary service in personal training, sports performance training, massage/bodywork, Pilates, yoga, physical therapy and chiropractic. Todd is the Lead Training Advisor for Under Armour, regular contributor to Men’s Health, and author of The IMPACT! Body Plan.

Todd Durkin created a “DOSE of DURKIN” to motivate and inspire people through weekly text messages every Monday morning that infuse video, audio, or just plain text messages. They are guaranteed to get your mind right and fire-you up. Check out to OPT-IN and start receiving your FREE messages. 

Todd is also the President/CEO of Todd Durkin Enterprises where he conducts motivational keynotes/presentations, educational & leadership workshops, he operates a Mastermind Group for dedicated fitness entrepreneurs, and he presents internationally on health, fitness, peak performance, and success in life.

You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @ToddDurkin, his FB Fan page at ToddDurkinFQ10, or sign up for his monthly motivational newsletter at You can get more information on his facility at or


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