I see it every day, people confused, listless, or dumbfounded about what to do.
Here are the basics of a good overall exercise program, pick and choose according to what you need to work on. I’ve included my own program so you can see an example, BUT I’M NOT SUGGESTING YOU DO WHAT I DO. *My workouts take about 45-60 minutes per day
Cardiovascular or Aerobic Endurance– do some type of consistent physical activity every day for 30 minutes. Intervals also work well for this. If you only do this, your life will be dramatically better.
*I do something every day, usually strength training 3 days, interval / cardio training 3 days, and then some martial arts or other sports or activities mixed in for fun, which have a light cardio component
Flexibility- Do range of motion exercises for 10-15 minutes 1-2 days per week.
* I usually do one long stretch session for 20 minutes one time per week
Strength– Use strength exercises (weights, cables, bands, bodyweight) 2-3 days per week
* I do this 3 days per week, but also focus on size, as I like being a little bit bigger
Size- Use high-volume (multiple sets) strength training with weights (dumbells, cables, bars) workouts 3-6 days per week for 30-45 Minutes
* I do size, or hypertrophy workouts 2 days per week. To me this is a crime deterrent, and I enjoy it in and of itself. If you look a little bigger / stronger, you are less likely to be the victim of a crime
Short-Term Endurance- Use interval training (30 seconds to 3 Minutes) 3 days per week
* I do this to be prepared for sports or competition, to burn body fat, and to be in shape for martial arts. I normally do sprints for 20-30 minutes one day per week
Power- 10-15 Minutes of Explosive Jumping, Medicine Ball, or Kicking / Punching Exercises 2-3 days per week. This is the part of training that most people neglect but which is very good to defeat the aging process. When you can’t jump, you’re getting old. You can jump at any age.
* I do 5-10 Minutes of Jumping / Boxing / Kicking Exercises 2 days per week
Balance– Do Closed-Chain (Standing Up) Bodyweight Strength Training at least one day per week
* I do bodyweight exercises (like one leg squats) one day per week
So my workout looks like this:
Monday: 45 Minutes of Bodyweight Training & Stretching
Tuesday: 30 minutes of running, with light stretching, 1.5 Hours of Jujitsu
Wednesday: 1 Hour Strength Training with Weights, Some Stretching Between Sets
Thursday: Same as Tuesday
Friday: Heavy Strength Training with Bars, Dumbells
Saturday: 30 Minutes of Cardio
Sunday: Fun day – golf, tennis, paddleboarding, swimming, etc
These are the principles involved in Program Design:
Goal- What do I want to accomplish?
Specificity– What specifically are you trying to achieve? Plan accordingly
Balance- between right / left, front / back, push / pull / rotate, work / rest
Safety– Are you warming up? Is your form correct? Do you have postural deficiencies? Pain? If so, address these issues and move on. No excuses!
Volume- How much are you doing? Are you doing too much? This is as much an art as a science. Resting heart rate in the morning is one way to know.
Measurement– How will you track what you do? How will you determine progress?
Download a basic cloud spreadsheet like Google Drive and use it to track your workouts.
Answer these questions and design a program for yourself using the above framework. Or, if you want to keep it very simple, just do something active every single day. Research shows that people who walk 2 miles every day live 10 years longer.
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