Many of us live an increasingly sedentary lifestyle in the 21st century. However, there is a growing awareness about the harmful effects of this and more and more people are realizing that exercise is not something that they should compromise on if they want to preserve their wellbeing.
What must be emphasized, though, is that physical exercise needs to be regular in order to bring results. It’s okay if you go jogging once in a while to boost your energy, but if you have particular fitness goals, then a well-planned-out workout routine is necessary – as well as religiously sticking to it.
Naturally, a personal trainer can draw up a plan for you and monitor your progress so that you don’t stray off the path. But this kind of service is not something that everyone can afford. The next best thing is, naturally, building your own workout routine. With ample research, determination and self-discipline, you will be able to reach your goal. Here is some help to get you started.
Determine what your goal is
The first important step in creating a personalized workout routine is, of course, determining what your particular goal is. Do you want to lose some excess weight? Build your stamina and boost your heart health? Or do you want to build strength and muscle? All of these goals will require a different approach and a different set of exercises to optimize your progress. However, besides just vaguely determining what you want to achieve by working out, make sure you are precise when setting goals. Your goal should be SMART – specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely. This is the only way to track your progress and advance.
Figure out your schedule
As said, your workout routine needs to be regular. Look at your weekly schedule and determine how much time you can realistically devote to your exercise plan. If you have less time, you will need to make your sessions as efficient as possible, making sure you work your whole body. Even if you don’t have much time throughout the day, you can divide your routine into bite-sized pieces and do short bursts of exercise several times a day. If you have more time throughout the week, you will need to break down your exercises to optimize recovery and avoid overtraining. Do not put high-intensity workouts back to back. Keep in mind that overscheduling is not a good idea. Planning for more than you can take will not speed up your progress. On the contrary, it can result in strain and injury, infinitely slowing it down. So, make sure you include rest days in your weekly schedule. They are an indispensable part of it.
Pick the right exercises
The next step will be picking out the exercises and determining your rep scheme. This will all come down to your goal. If you want to lose weight, consider HIIT such as jumping and running, or even weight training. If you want to build muscle, focus on resistance training exercises such as deadlift and bench press. If you’re a beginner, overcomplicating your routine is a bad idea. Not only is it unnecessary and borderline frustrating, but it also leaves more room for error if you add a lot of moves. So, downsize your list and create a simple routine that you won’t get mixed up. You can make the most of your time and effort if you focus on compound moves at first. Unless you have a specific body part that you want to direct your focus on, isolation moves should be left for later.
Adjust your diet
To ensure that you are efficiently working towards your goal, you should adjust your diet according to what you want to achieve, too. The most important thing is keeping your diet healthy so that your body can keep up with all the demanding moves. Even if you want to lose weight, don’t sacrifice eating. What you should do if that is your goal is creating a calorie deficit and avoiding certain foods. On the other hand, for muscle gain, you naturally want to create a calorie surplus.
Decide where you’ll train
Another important factor to include in your plan is where exactly you will work out. Of course, if you have ample room in your home, it is an option. Your routine does not necessarily have to involve a lot of equipment, simply using your body weight might be enough. However, consider how much you could benefit from a gym membership and all the available equipment that you will gain access to. Besides the equipment, you will also gain access to a positive environment that will motivate you. For instance, trainers at Soul Train put great emphasis on the mental element of exercise which plays a huge role in success. Purchasing a membership will also give you an additional reason to stay on track since you don’t want to waste your money. Finally, working out outside during the warmer part of the year is also an option. Find out if there is a park or an outdoor gym near your home.
Switch it up
Even when you have finally created your perfect workout plan, your work is unfortunately still not done. Sticking to the same moves and same exercises for a prolonged period of time is not recommended. Your body will get used to these exercises and their efficiency will plummet. You, too, will get bored and start losing your enthusiasm and motivation since you keep doing the same thing. Finally, you are also risking injury if you don’t change your moves from time to time, since your body needs time to recover from them. Therefore, make sure you add variety to your workout routine. You don’t have to start everything from scratch once again; all you need to do is switch up the current exercises a little every 6-8 weeks, or more often if you feel the need to do so.
Exercise is not only a great way to stay fit but it’s also the perfect way to lift your mood and maintain your mental well-being. Create your own plan and stick to it – if you focus on the right things, you will see results in due time.