We always hear that we need to keep ourselves active each day. But how do we actually do this through the week? Do we do the same type of workout everyday? Is there a smart and efficient way to split up our workouts?
Exercise regimes vary tremendously from person to person and are dependent on an individual’s goals, body type, health, and lifestyle. With that being said, if you are new to the world of exercising, it’s hard to know where to start. Below, I’ve broken down a week of ideal workouts to gradually work your training regime up to.
Monday: Full body weight training
On Mondays, most people are sufficiently rested from the weekend and motivated for the week ahead. This is a good opportunity to utilize all major muscle groups and get in a moderate full body weight training. If you are a gym member, start with a five to ten minute warm up on the treadmill followed by some dynamic stretching. After that, 45 minutes is a good duration for weight training. If you are fond of sweating it out, try adding 10 to 15 minutes of cardio. Remember to save some energy for the rest of the week, so avoid pushing yourself too hard on day one.
Tuesday: Yoga or pilates
Your body will be quite sore from the day before and it is likely working hard to repair your muscles. With that being said, I recommend avoiding stimulating your muscle with weights and instead, with mindful, slower movements. Try joining a group yoga or pilates class. If you are short on time, online classes are great - all you need is a mat and some space.
Wednesday: Lower body and core weight training
This day is reserved for lower body muscles and the core. Start with some compound exercises such as squats, lunges, leg presses and step ups. As well, try adding a few isolated exercises to target your muscles that you are looking to enhance. I always recommend to my clients to add at least two core exercises at the end of their workout to build their core strength consistently over time. At the end of your gym session, make sure to add some static stretches for your lower body and abs.
Thursday: Mediation and stretching
Everyone has that one day when they cannot afford a full workout session. On these days, try to commit to a ten minute meditation. If you are feeling sore or tight from stress or lack of movement, do a ten minute stretch before going to bed. This can enhance your sleep quality so you are more readily prepared for the next day.
Friday: Upper body and core weight training
Upper body sessions are essential for many individuals today due to the amount of time we spend at a desk, in front of a computer, or on the phone. Our shoulders are internally rotated inwards, our back is hunched, and we start developing a “turtle neck”. Therefore, it is very important to enhance our upper body through strengthening, activating and increasing its range of motion. Try adding exercises such as pull ups, push ups, shoulder presses and pull downs. Make sure to work on the mobility of the joints and stretch out the targeted muscles after the workout.
Saturday: social sports (i.e. tennis, volleyball, golf, a beach walk)
As important as physical health is, our social health requires attention too. I encourage everyone to participate in some sort of social sport one plus times a week. This can be a team sport such as soccer or an intimate and easy catch-up with a friend while walking along the beach. Socially connecting while being active hits two-birds-with-one-stone. If done in nature, the effects are magnified.
Sunday: Active rest day at home
Everyone needs a day where they can just stay at home and tend to their to do lists. On these days, make sure to stay active through simple, productive tasks such as watering the plants, vacuuming and mopping, sorting the laundry pile, and popping outside for a drying cleaning visit or a weekly farmers market stroll.