DO I NEED TO WORKOUT EVERY DAY?
This is purely dependent on your goals and personal health history. It is recommended that everyone gets at least 30-minutes of physical activity each day, where their heart rate gets into the aerobic zone. This does not have to be in any specific way nor does it only have to be in the gym; everything from taking a brisk walk, dancing, or doing some yard work counts towards that activity goal. The Gym allows us to get that activity in a controlled environment, and allows us to train more efficiently. We recommend that everyone regardless of their goals, perform a basic warm-up exercise routine each day along with basic stretches to keep everything moving properly.
HOW MANY STRENGTH WORKOUTS PER WEEK?
Most Strength Training programs are set up for 3 Strength Training workouts per week, preferably with a day’s rest in between each. It is optimal to have a day of active recovery in between workouts, and no more than 2 days off unless necessary. If you have to occasionally move a workout and it’s going to be back-to-back with another workout, try to adjust to having a rest day in-between. Do not do all 3 workouts back-to-back and then take 4 days off; your body will not benefit from that.
WHAT TO DO ON THE OTHER DAYS?
On the days you are not doing strength training it is recommended that you do some light stretching and movement to stay mobile. 20-30 minutes of anything that gets your heart rate up and your body moving for that amount of time is acceptable; examples include stretching, walking, dancing, yoga, biking, karaoke, gardening, etc…
SHOULD I BE SORE?
Soreness is part of working out. Performing exercise creates tissue damage that your body has to repair, and after it is healed your body adapts by building more lean muscle and bone. This is why it is just as important to focus on your recovery in between strength training workouts, because that is when the progress is really made.
Remember, more is not always better. While you could train 7-days a week, it takes proper planning and adjusting your workouts constantly. Most people benefit from 3-4 strength workouts per week, and on the off-days doing lite activities such as stretching, cardio, or fun leisurely hobbies. Too much strength training workouts without enough recovery will inevitably result in burnout, exhaustion, and injury.
While your muscles may be a little tender for a couple days after a workout, they should not be painful to the point of inability. If you feel chronically in pain, the workout plan either needs adjusting, or we need to focus more on your recovery (sleep, stretching, hydration, nutrition, etc…). If the soreness lasts longer than a week, consult your trainer or a Medical Professional.
WHAT SHOULD MY NUTRITION LOOK LIKE?
Everyone’s nutritional needs are different. First thing to note is there is no one-size-fits-all diet and there aren’t any shortcuts to progress.
The main thing about fitness nutrition to remember is your diet is just the building blocks for your body. Feed it nutritionally dense foods and you will feel & perform better. Your body needs protein, carbohydrates, fats, as-well-as vitamins & minerals to work properly.
Your body needs protein to build & repair lean tissue. In general, someone who is participating in a strength training program needs between 0.5 - 1 gram of Protein per Pound of Body Weight (example: A person who is 150-pounds needs between 75 - 150 grams of protein per day). Protein is best absorbed in small quantities spread throughout the day, generally in 20-30 gram servings. More protein can be eaten in a single meal, it just will take longer to absorb. Some reliable sources of protein are lean meats (beef or chicken), eggs, and tofu.
Carbohydrates are immediate energy for the body to use, and if timed right can really boost your energy levels. Nutritionally dense sources include most fruits, vegetables, and berries. Breads, grains, starches, and added-sugars are also examples of carbohydrate sources, but that are less nutrient dense and very easy to over-consume.
Dietary Fats are also a great source of sustained energy; however, fats are calorie-dense and should be eaten sparingly. Nuts, oils, and seeds are considered fats.
HOW SHOULD MY WORKOUT BE STRUCTURED?
At first, your workouts will be around 30-minutes, 2-3 days per week. Following a short warm up to get muscles ready for exercise, you will do a combination of Strength, Conditioning, and Mobility exercises. After your workout, you will close out with some accessory exercises and cool down stretches that your trainer will teach to you. As you get stronger and more resilient, your exercise plan will become more customized over time depending on your needs and goals.
Your workout should start out with a general warm-up. This short routine includes simple stretches and exercises to get the body moving and heart-rate elevated. Jumping right into a workout without a proper warm-up will eventually result in injury.
Here is a link to a full-body warm up routine (or off-day lite workout): https://youtu.be/_nk33yks1vs
Sometimes you will need to do some supplementary exercises to help warmup a specific group of muscles. Here are some video links to some exercises for specific muscle groups.
Shoulders & Upper Body- https://youtu.be/xQOVqHLb5tE
Knees & Lower Leg- https://youtu.be/NF5-HfGw3RM
Hips & Lower Back- https://youtu.be/MqKWgxZmo14
Once your warmup is complete it’s time to workout! Some strength training workouts are full-body, while others are devoted to either lower or upper body depending on your fitness level and goals.
Most strength training programs make use of supersets and circuits to keep you moving. Supersets are when you do a pair of exercises, back-to-back with minimal rest in between each exercise. Supersets and Circuits are indicated under the “Order” column on your workout plan. Each pairing of exercises is purposeful. This allows for more work to be done while limiting fatigue. During a superset rest should be minimal, at most 30-seconds. In between supersets, you may take up to a 2-minute rest. Active Stretching is recommended in between supersets. Excessive rest will result in less progress.
Remember that it’s important to practice control over every rep. If you practice good technique and control, you will get stronger faster. Explode on the contraction, slow down on the negative phase of the rep, keep good form throughout the exercise.
After your workout, be sure to perform some stretching and mobility work. This will help you recover faster and alleviate soreness.
HOW DO I PROGRESS MY WORKOUT?
There are several ways to progress your workout; the main thing is to challenge yourself.
Most beginner programs start off with performing 2-3 sets of each exercise. When picking what weight to use, you should be using a weight that leaves you feeling challenged by the last set, and it is difficult to finish all the repetitions.
For most exercises you are looking for a moderate weight that challenges you by around 8-12 repetitions. Some exercises call for a heavier weight to be used where you fatigue between 1-6 reps, while some exercises require a light weight where you fatigue between 15-20 reps. Be sure to refer to your exercise program and ask your coach for progression options.
For beginner programs, it is recommended to keep the weight the same until you can complete all sets with the recommended number of reps (Example 3x10). Once you can complete all the sets, increase the weight by 5-10 lbs. Keep repeating this process each week until progress slows down. At that point, your coach will adjust the plan so you can continue to make progress.
WHAT DO I DO IF MY WORKOUTS START TO GET BORING?
Tell your coach and they will help you make it fun again. Part of training is repetition, but it does not mean having to do the same thing every workout. Each exercise has many ways to create variety, whether that means changing up which equipment you use to changing the order of exercises. As long as we stick to the main goal of the workout, you will make progress.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I CHANGE MY PROGRAM?
It really depends on your goals. Most well designed programs are meant to be performed for 2-3 months before making any major changes. Remember to always give a new program time to work; many people don’t see much progress in the first month so decide they need to change their program prematurely. You should only change your programming when you are no longer making progress with your completed program, or if your goals dramatically change.
HOW DO I GET THE MOST OUT OF A PERSONAL TRAINER?
Our job as personal trainers & coaches is to design a workout program that fits with your goals & needs in mind. To do that we need you to communicate some things with us and consider the following.
1: What exercises do you love and which ones do you hate? My favorite way to do this is by having our members put Happy😀 or Sad 🙁 faces next to the exercises on their workout sheet. This allows us to customize your workouts to do the fun things more often and find alternatives for the exercises you hate.
2: Have fun with what you are good at, and practice things that you need to improve on often. By playing with the things you like doing while shoring up any weaknesses you may have, you will make a lot of progress.
3: Tell us if you are in pain, sick, or injured. While some discomfort is expected with exercise, sharp pains and extreme soreness are not good. Pain is an indicator that something is wrong. Also, if you are sick, stay home and rest until you are healed up.
4: Tell us if you haven’t slept, eaten, or hydrated well. We will adjust your workout accordingly. If this is an ongoing issue, we will help you come up with a solution.
5: Follow the plan. We are experts in our field and have designed your workout program just for you. If you deviate too much from the plan, it won’t work as intended.
6: Show up & Be on time. Our coaches have a schedule and other appointments throughout the day. If you are late to your training time, your coach will not be able to give you the full attention you require. If you are not consistently showing up for your appointments, you won’t be making progress.
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