How to Build an Effective Workout Routine: Tips and Tricks

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With today’s hectic lifestyles, you probably don’t feel like you ever have a whole, uninterrupted hour just to work out at the gym. But this is one of many fitness myths that may be holding you back from building an effective workout routine that works for your schedule. In this post, learn tips and tricks from experts that can help you create a personalized workout regimen.

How Much Exercise Do You Truly Need?
You need two different types of exercise in order to be truly fit: strength building and cardiovascular. The former relates to building muscle (and, ideally, reducing fat). The latter refers to aerobic workouts to improve endurance, circulation, coordination and overall body fitness.

Here are the current weekly fitness guidelines for an average adult:

150 minutes (2.5 hours) of cardiovascular activity. This is 20 minutes every day, or 30 minutes for 5 days per week, or 45 minutes for 3 days per week. If you can think of this requirement as the same amount of time you might reserve to watch a film, it might seem less daunting!

Twice per week whole-body strength training. Here, the goal is not so much time-focused as muscle-group focused. If you can aim to work out all the major muscle groups in two sessions per week (or more sessions if this works better for you) you will have met the requirement.

Building a Workout That Works for You
Knowing how much and what types of exercise to include in your workout regimen is a helpful first step. But you still need to design a workout that you will enjoy enough to actually commit to!

The good news is, there are no universal standards on what type of cardiovascular exercise you must do or even what form your strength training must come in. You simply need to choose activities to fit the basic criteria – increase endurance and build muscle.

Cardiovascular (Aerobic) Options

– Walking or jogging.
– Cycling or elliptical.
– Swimming.
– Skiing or snowboarding.
– Pilates or yoga.
– Zumba or ballroom dancing.
– Rollerblading or good old-fashioned roller skating.
– Ice skating.
– Hula hoops and trampolines.
– Belly dancing or hip hop.
– Crossfit.
– Fill in your favorites here!

Strength Training (Muscle Building) Options
Here are some common ways that people choose to build muscle.

– Free weights.
– Weight machines.
– Kettle bell workouts.
– Using ankle and wrist weights while walking.
– Fill in your favorites here!

What to Do Next
Now that you have some ideas of options that fit the bill for each type of required workout you need weekly, it is time to start mixing and matching. Here, you will want to challenge yourself to think creatively if you are very time-crunched.

For example, you can take online courses from home or work, pop in a DVD, join a gym or fitness club, or just head outdoors – it’s up to you!