Our fitness routine is insane.
Seriously – the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over… And expecting a different result. Why do we expect that our same cycle of failure at the gym is eventually going to result in success? Something we’re doing is not working.
Its time to try a new approach.
We need a new way. A plan that will work. Something that’s proven. Times have changed, we have changed, and the fitness industry has changed. I’d like to propose “The New Workout Plan”. It’s time we finally get somewhere.
The game’s no fun when you’re losing.
It’s tough to win the game when you don’t know how to play. Frankly, I think that’s a large part of the problem with fitness today – people simply don’t know how to play the game! When you’re losing, you get frustrated, you get discouraged, and you lose interest. Then, all of a sudden, you’re cancelling your gym membership. Wouldn’t it be so much easier if you had a plan you knew would work?
That’s where “The New Workout Plan” comes in.
It’s simple, really, and it’s what I do with my clients at the gym! It’s all about what you’re actually doing at the gym and with your workouts. Simply spending your time on a little cardio isn’t gonna get you there… neither is farting around on a couple of machines with no real goal, aim, or formula. There’s a few components that a good solid workout plan should have.
Step 1 – Warm-Up
Yes, it DOES matter. Warming up prior to your workout serves several purposes, from helping prevent injury to warming up cold muscles to all the biological processes that happen. The long and the short of it is… it REALLY DOES MATTER! So what, exactly, should a warm-up look like? A good dynamic warm-up is going to simulate the workout you’re about to do – it should be a very watered down version of what’s coming. Some non-weighted movements, some mobility, some agility… a little of everything. NOT just cardio on the treadmill/bike and NOT just static stretching.
Step 2 – Strength Training
Yes, that includes you. FOR THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF PEOPLE, strength is going to help you get to your goals. Want to lose weight/burn fat? Run farther or faster? Get stronger or bigger? Guess what – strength training is going to help (yes, even to LOSE weight). There’s lots of sciencey explanation to it, but just trust me here (if you don’t, ok… go research it!).
This doesn’t mean just bench, squad, deadlift.
There’s SO much more to strength training than the old standbys. You don’t need a barbell, heck, you don’t even need dumbbells… and you CERTAINLY do NOT need machines. As a matter of fact, stay the heck away from the “strength machines” – your time is better spent elsewhere. Use kettlebells, medicine balls, resistance bands, TRX, heck, use your BODYWEIGHT! There are SO many different ways to train strength… functional training, circuit training, metabolic training… oh the fun you can have! I STRONGLY, strongly, strongly recommend you enlist the help of a personal trainer or coach. There ARE so many ways to train… and often, in order to get the best, fastest, and most efficient, effective results… you need a knowledgable guide to help you find your way. Make the investment… it’s worth it.
Step 3 – Cardio
Yes, cardio does have a place here, but it’s not always the main event, k? Your cardio needs will vary based on MANY factors, but in general, for most people, 15 to 30 minutes at a 7 out of 10 effort level will do you a lot of good. This can be treadmill, bike, elliptical, whatever you like. Heck, go outside for a run, enjoy the weather! Depending on how you do your strength training, there might even be cardio involved there, too! It doesn’t have to suck, and it doesn’t have to be boring.
Step 4 – Cool-Down
Depending on how hard you’re going and what, exactly, your workout was… it’s more than likely that a cooldown of some kind is advisable. It won’t take long, and it isn’t complicated – a cooldown is just an opportunity for your body to come down gently from what you just did… bring that heart rate down gently, don’t lock up and get stiff, etc. Walk gently stepping down the intensity over the course of like 5 minutes – that sort of thing. Again, there’s science to it… but unless you feel like researching, trust me here.
Step 5 – Mobility & Flexibility
This is SO BEYOND CRUCIAL. I can’t even TELL you how important this is. When you’re done with your workout you simply MUST work on mobility and flexibility. If you don’t know what foam rolling is, it’s time to get educated. The short version here is, it’s basically self-massage, and it is massively important. Do it. Seriously. It’s going to be awful WHILE you’re doing it, but it’s well worth it in the end, and you’ll feel SO much better after. This is so important I’m going to do a whole blog post dedicated just to foam rolling and mobility in the near future.
The old way is out – time for The New Workout Plan
Gone are the days of the past – a brisk walk on the treadmill for 40 minutes, or absolutely crushing the elliptical for 30 minutes… just isn’t gonna cut it. I chat all about this a little more in-depth in Podcast Episode 41, but a real easy way to succeed here? Enlist the help of a coach or personal trainer.
If you’re interested in MY help…
Well, we can do that too. I AM now accepting Virtual Training clients. What’s that mean? What’s involved? Shoot me a message at Darrell@SoTHISIsFitness.com with the subject “virtual coaching” and let’s chat 🙂
What’s in this episode:
- The Joy of Running
- I’ve got to make things easier on myself
- The New Workout Plan
- How we’ve failed in the past, how to build the new plan, and how to succeed
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- Podcast Companion Blog Archives
- Email – Podcast@sothisisfitness.com
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