Monday, January 28, 2013

how often should I do the same workout routine?


how often should I do the same workout routine?


This is a good question, usually asked with the thought of "I like this exercise and want to do it more often, but I also want to make sure the rest of my body is getting worked out, too."

Here comes the stock answer: "It depends."

It depends on what your goal is, and why you're working out in the first place.

Are you trying to lose weight?

When you're after weight loss, remember that 90% of your success will come from your eating habits and your long-term approach:


Once you've got your nutrition/diet under control, you're already on your way to losing weight. At this point your workouts are just extras - helping you lose weight extra fast, and helping you develop muscle tone and shape so you look extra good. And if it's just extra, the exact type, routine, and frequency doesn't matter.

  • 20 minutes of high intensity exercise 2-3 times per week. (allowing your muscles to heal from being sore before blasting them again.)
  • Low intensity cardio: as much as your schedule will allow - there's virtually no such thing as too much!
  • Passive Fitness - simply moving your body throughout the day can help deliver your results.

As for repeatedly doing the same workout? I wouldn't do the exact same workout so often it becomes your only routine, but there's no rule saying you have to mix it up every day, either.

Some people enjoy the consistency and familiarity of doing the same thing, knowing what's in store for them as they get ready to start. Others get bored quickly and want to try something new each day.

My opinion - balance is better. But as long as you're getting sweaty, you're doing yourself good.

You have a bit more leeway to be repetitive with your cardio workouts than your weight training. In fact, I'll add 2 caveats regarding weight training and muscle building:

  • Balance. Don't work your chest and shoulders while ignoring your back. Don't work your upper body while ignoring your legs. Full-body healthy will require full-body attention.
  • Rest. Let your muscles rest and recover before pounding them again with another workout.

Remember, you're training for YOUR goal, so you get to choose your workouts. And as much as I believe in balance, I also believe in the principle of  "you can do anything, but not everything." It's ok to specialize.

Hopefully I answered the question. Or maybe I just made it all clear as mud. Either way, happy working out!

-Chris Butterworth

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