About half of the people who start an exercise program quit within six months. They don’t stick with it because they didn’t have a plan that was easy to remember and follow. Exercising is like trying to reach any goal – you have to know how to create a workout plan that fits your schedule and lifestyle.
Whether you’re a new fitness enthusiast or an expert wellness trainer, workout planning is essential to making your workout regimen a success.
How to Create a Workout Plan That Works for You
Many people who start exercising feel like they are working for their plan, rather than their plan working for them. That’s because they have a program that isn’t tailored for their needs and unique situation. Let’s look at five ways to make sure your fitness plan is right for you.
1. Set Clear Objectives
When you start setting up a new workout program, it’s important to know why you’re doing it. General goals like “feel better” or “lose weight” aren’t specific enough. Know what you want to accomplish and write it down in your plan.
Setting a SMART goal will help. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based. Some SMART goal examples are “run a mile in under 10 minutes by the end of the quarter” or “Reduce my body fat by 5% within six months.”
2. Set a Schedule
If you aren’t already exercising regularly, it’s essential to understand where this new activity will fit your schedule. Experts agree 150 minutes of exercise per week is necessary for better health. They also agree you should allow for two rest days per week so your body can recover between workout days.
Creating a workout plan means setting aside 30 minutes a day for five days each week. Most people can find a half-hour in their day to exercise, but it’s crucial to decide on a time you can exercise consistently.
3. Plan for Injury Prevention
If your workout of choice is running, or any activity that involves repetitive motion, build in time for stretches and other exercises that help prevent injury. If you’ve ever experienced Achilles heel pain, this article lists practical exercises to help you reduce discomfort and avoid serious injury. Injuries are a leading cause of people giving up on their workout plan.
4. Learn How to Strength Train
Strength training is one of the oldest and most effective ways to exercise. Strength training benefits include increased muscle mass, improved cardiovascular health, enhanced core strength, higher bone density, and a greater range of motion and flexibility.
If you aren’t already strength training with bodyweight exercises like push-ups or using exercise machines like a leg press, consider adding strength exercises to your regimen.
5. Save Time and See Big Results With HIIT
If you are always pressed for time, but you want to get the maximum results from your workout, consider High-Intensity Interval Training. HITT workouts involve short, intense bursts of exercise at your maximum effort in 10-20 minutes. Adding two to three HIIT sessions to your workout plan can help you save time and see significant results.
Plan for Success
If you’re new to exercise, knowing how to create a workout plan will help you stick with a program and meeting your goals. If you’ve been working out for a long time, but want to take your health and wellness to the next level, the right plan can help you as well. Remember to set SMART goals, make time in your day every day, and choose a wide range of exercises to keep things interesting.
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