Not too long ago, I brought up the frequency of exercise to achieve your goals. I thought it might make sense to go into a little more detail and offer a simple plan for those of you who might not have confidence that what you are doing is right for you.
We have three examples here: First is the average person who is able to exercise less than 5 times a week and probably spends an hour or less each time. Most of you in this category are aged 30-55 and/or areat least working a full time job (and more than 40 hours), as well as have families with heavy time commitments. Your weekends aren’t very free because of family obligations, and you are likely undersleeping most days. For you, I suggest a strength training twice a week plan, with cardio activity the rest of the available time. If you want faster results, running is likely the best cardio calorie burner, but if you are not a runner, try any cardio device or exercise you like. Just keep in mind that intensity leads to more results. So you will likely perform a total body strength workout, consisting of exercises for the following body parts: Chest, Back, Triceps, Biceps, Quadriceps (thighs), Hamstrings (back of the legs) Shoulders and Calves. If I was pressed for time, I’d pass on Biceps and Calves. If I was really pressed for time, I’d only do Chest, Back, Quads and Hamstrings. These large muscles require lots of oxygen to make them work hard, and should not be ignored.
For example two, we have someone who is considered a more advanced exerciser, in that he or she devotes more time to exercise and is willing to strength train more than twice a week. A four time a week strength trainer might alternate legs and upper body to rest worked body parts while getting to lift weights more often than just twice a week. Core and cardio might be a little bit each day, or on days listed below as Off. Perhaps something like this:
Monday – Chest, Arms, Back, Shoulders
Tuesday – Quads, Hamstrings, Calves
Wednesday – Off
Thursday – Repeat Monday
Friday – Off
Saturday – Repeat Tuesday
Sunday – Off
To get the specific exercises, you can certainly consult a certified trainer, literature or other sources of information.
And finally, for those of you who may want to break up your training and try to intensely exercise by strengthening your muscles more often, I will offer a final listing. Most people at this level have already come across how to split their workouts, because they are students of exercise and read quite a bit, as well as speak to others in the know. But it assumes you train 5-6 times per week and have an interest in increasing muscle:
Monday: Chest / Triceps
Tuesday: Quads / Hamstrings
Wednesday: Shoulders, Biceps, Calves
Friday: Back (All three sections)
Saturday: Chest / Triceps
Sunday: Quads / Hamstrings
Here, you are hitting your muscles groups twice every seven days. Always take at least one day off every week, and remember, core and cardio are up to you, though core about three times a week makes sense. But no matter what you do, be consistent, try your best, and have a plan. If others are doing it, so can you!