Throughout my years in the fitness industry, I’ve seen many things both good and bad. Working at a commercial gym for two years, I tend to see more bad than good.

Below is a checklist I came up with to help you determine whether you’re truly training or just wasting your time.

#1 Are you squatting or deadlifting regularly?
Hitting 3–4 sets of 135 lbs for 10 reps doesn’t count. You should be performing heavy deadlifts or squats at least one time per week. I’ve found that a heavy deadlift day and a squat day in the same week generally doesn’t work because it’s way too taxing on the body. Unless you’re doing these two exercises regularly, don’t come to me asking how to put on more muscle.

#2 Do you perform body weight movements?
My number one upper body movement is pull-ups, either body weight or weighted. If you don’t perform pull-ups regularly, get out of my gym. You’re wasting space. On top of pull-ups, there are hundreds of body weight movements that should be utilized in any training program. If you can’t move your body weight fluently, what good are you? And no, I don’t care if you bench press 500 lbs or more.

#3 Does your warm up last more than ten minutes?
If you don’t warm up prior to working out and have yet to get injured, chances are you aren’t training hard enough. I love the looks I get at the gym while performing my warm up. Just because you don’t sweat during your workout doesn’t mean you get to look at me like I have two heads because I’m dripping after a nice warm up. This is generally when I will perform my body weight movements as well as a nice dynamic warm up, some joint mobility, and of course, foam roller work.

#4 Do you perform hill sprints or regular sprints?
I always get a kick out of seeing people walk backward on the treadmill at 2.0 mph. “I’m tricking my body to raise my heart rate though.” Oh really…to me you’re just making a fool out of yourself. Try running sprints or hill sprints a couple days a week for an extended period of time and then tell me that you need to trick your body into burning fat.

#5 Are you incorporating complexes into your weekly routine?
These are a great tool that very few people use. Not only will they shed fat and increase your metabolism, but they also build mental toughness. Barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, and sandbags are my four favorite tools for complexes.

#6 After the workout, do you look like you worked out?
Day in and day out, I see people walk into the gym and leave 1–2 hours later looking no different than they did when they entered the facility. Personally, when I leave the gym I look like hell. Between the sweat and chalk all over me, it looks like I’ve been through battle, which is exactly what just happened.

#7 Is jumping rope part of your cardio routine?
It’s amazing how few people still jump rope. Not only will jumping rope burn a lot of calories in a short period of time, but it will also improve your foot speed, which can’t hurt anyone.

#8 Do you take your nutrition seriously?
Anyone serious about weight training knows that a great deal of your results come from your nutrition. Not only does your food fuel you through your workouts, but it will also help with the recovery process. Anyone eating fast food and junk regularly isn’t serious about training. “You can’t outwork a bad diet.”

#9 Is going out to drink your major source of entertainment?
Great idea—lets bust our butt all week long at the gym so we can suck down thousands of dead calories and poison our bodies over the weekend (or worse yet during the week). If you’re serious about your training, lay off the drinking. This will benefit you in all aspects of your life (other than your sex life).

#10 Are you getting results?
If you’ve been spending a great deal of time at the gym without any results, chances are you aren’t training with the proper intensity. Give your program a couple months to work and if you see nothing, reevaluate what you’re doing. Do not jump from program to program. Give each particular program the adequate amount of time to work before reevaluating.

Chances are it isn’t the program—it’s your lack of intensity!