How to Progress Your Exercise Routine
It can be difficult to know how to continually improve your strength or aerobic capacity without guidance from experienced coaches. When undertaking any new exercise routine there are a lot of questions that might need to be answered. For example:
- How long should you exercise for each day?
- How many times each week should you exercise?
- How hard should you train?
In this post we break down these complex topics and provide a simple three step process that can be used to ensure long-term progress without burnout, overtraining or injury.
Three Keys to Unstoppable Progress
Duration of exercise or how long you train plays a huge part in exercise progress. If you train for too long as a beginner you will get delayed onset muscle soreness and may struggle to recover adequately. However, if you train for too little time you will fail to reach a threshold needed to ensure progression.
Duration of exercise should be gradually increased until the point where you can comfortably meet the daily recommended exercise and physical activity requirements.
The majority of people that want to progress in their exercise routine typically increase intensity or difficult level first. This is a mistake.
The first key to unstoppable progress is to increase duration of exercise. A 5 to 10% addition to exercise duration each week is enough for the majority of people to ensure continued progress. As an example, if you currently walk for 20 minutes your next four sessions could look like this: session 1 – 20 minutes, session 2 – 22 minutes, session 3 – 24 minutes, session 4 – 25 minutes.
Once duration of exercise is increased to a point where further increases are no longer feasible the second key to unstoppable progress is to increase the frequency of exercise. It might not seem like a big accomplishment but going from training two times each week to three times each week is a 50% increase in exercise. Put another way, that’s 50% faster progress, 50% better results etc- you get the idea! Our coaches at Motiv8 Fitness recommend starting with two sessions each week, build this into a routine to the point where you feel it is sustainable before progressing to three or more sessions each week.
The third key principle of unstoppable progress is to increase exercise intensity. By now you will have increased your exercise duration as well as exercise frequency – now it is time to take your training to the next level.
Exercise intensity is most often measured through a 1-Rep Max Charts, Heart Rate or Speed.
Putting it All Together
Let’s use an example of a person that wants to participate in a 5km run or race.
Step 1: Increase duration from 20 minutes of running to 40 minutes of running. The key here is to increase duration while maintaining running speed.
Step 2: Once this person can run for 40 continuous minutes – they should add a second or third day of running into their weekly training calendar.
Step 3: This person should now begin to run faster and build towards their goal pace or time for a 5km run. Interval training, tempo runs, sprints and other forms of high speed training should begin to form part of a training plan.
Personal Training in Waterford
Are you starting to lose motivation due to lack of progress or feel like you’re not getting the results you deserve? Do you struggle to plan your training week and want to make the most of your limited free time? If you answered yes you should consider personal training.
We will build a plan that gets you results and help you every step of the way. Combining nutrition, strength and other physical activity can be difficult to plan – take the guessing out of it and work with one of our qualified coaches.
Contact Us for more information regarding personal training in Waterford.