If you’ve tried to find a workout that fits you but just can’t seem to find one that gives you what you want, then it’s time to start designing your own. Follow this week’s article to make a personalized workout that’s just right for your needs.
It’s common for people to fall into a routine of simply following a friend or a family member with their fitness plan. I admit that doing something is always better than doing nothing, but I believe that everyone should personalize their program and do what’s best for their own body. If you become your own trainer, you will never have an excuse to skip your fitness routine.
If you feel lost on how to get started, keep reading because I’m going to give you my best tips to help you design your own personalized workout.
A personalized workout should focus on areas that you’d like to work on. You can make it yours and perhaps focus on cardio or one particular muscle group. You can change up the timing and do a longer workout or a quick high impact workout if you have a very busy schedule. Above all, do what works for you. Here is a list of six exercise groups to help get you started. I recommend picking from at least two groups for each routine to make sure you are challenging your body! Take a look at my Fit Tips Workout Video playlist on YouTube for instructions on how to do these moves correctly.
Here’s a sample workout I made for myself when I wanted to push myself while working my core and my glutes. I chose a circuit style routine because I love to challenge my mind and at the same time I’m pushing my body. This routine is based on HIIT, which helps your body work harder while incorporating recovery time into the actual workout.
This is a personalized workout that I created to meet my needs on a particular day. I wanted to focus on my glutes and core and only had 30 minutes available. Of course, you can try my workout. I found it fun and challenging, plus I had to concentrate on timing which kept me focused throughout. But I want to show you how to create your own ultimate workout, too, because a workout that’s perfect for me may not be perfect for you.
And remember, the best workout for you may change day-by-day, depending on your daily activity and how much time you have. You also need to update your workout routine regularly, as your body will adapt. What was once a demanding workout will start to feel easier and easier. Here are five steps you can take to create your own circuit style personalized ultimate workout:
My suggestion is that you aim for at least 30-45 minutes. If you are pushed for time a shorter duration will do, but try to carve out a decent amount of time and make fitness become a priority activity.
What area of the body do you want to work most? Do you want to do a total body workout? My personal favorite is to do total body with a little extra focus on the glutes. The glutes, more commonly known as your rear end, is a large muscle group that requires a lot of energy to work. Performing a workout with extra focus on large muscle groups can help you burn a few extra calories during your workout.
This will allow you to perform three total rounds of your chosen exercises. I like to use time for training instead of counting the number of reps, because it pushes me a little harder during my workouts. It also helps to finish a workout on schedule.
Choose 4-5 exercises from my examples list or choose exercises that you personally enjoy. I always incorporate at least one cardio exercise and one core exercise, but that’s just my personal rule. This is your personalized workout; pick moves based on your individual needs.
Decide on a duration and how long you want to perform reps of each move. The key point to take into consideration is the longer the duration, the harder your body will be working. The higher the intensity, the harder it’s working. If you’re working at a high intensity of 7/10 or more, keep the duration short. For low intensity exercises, go for a longer duration.
Rest time is important. However, the shorter the rest period, the harder your body will be working. If you’re a beginner, keep your work/rest ratio at 50:50 until you build your fitness level.
The physical adaptations that take place in the body as, a result of performing regular physical activity and/or following a healthy diet, include weight loss, improved muscle tone and an improved cardiovascular fitness level. Given the common health benefits associated with living a healthy, active lifestyle, it’s important to understand that we all respond to increased physical demands or dietary changes at different rates. You should never compare your body or your results to anyone else. You are truly one of a kind (unless of course you are an identical twin).
I want to encourage you to do an occasional workout that’s all about you. It may sound a little bit selfish, especially if you always do exercise with a friend. But once you create your own personalized workout it will help you to feel powerful, confident and in control. You can still exercise with friends, but taking time for your own needs can help make exercise more effective for you.
I’m not telling you to ditch your favorite fitness video or completely abandon your fitness group. I’m simply suggesting that you create your very own ‘go to’ workout and branch out on your own every once in a while. It will give you the opportunity to improve your overall body awareness and fitness confidence. It will also ensure that when you don’t have access to your usual support group, you’ll still have the knowledge to keep your fitness goals on track.
Fitness can be simple. Varying the mode, intensity and duration of your workouts on a regular basis will help you towards achieving your goals. I hope you have fun creating your own personalized workout. Listen to your body, mix up with the exercises, and most importantly have fun being your own personal trainer!
Samantha Clayton is responsible for all activities relating to exercise and fitness education for Independent Herbalife Members and employees. Through in-person training sessions, educational tools and materials, and her blog (www.discovergoodfitness.com), she ensures that the important role of exercise as part of a healthy, active life is understood by all. She also helps create, organize and promote employee fitness programs and activities as an integral part of the company’s corporate wellness program.
A native of Liverpool, England, Samantha initially worked as a consultant for Herbalife for two years and led the Herbalife24-Fit program, the company’s first comprehensive fitness training program and DVD series.
Before joining the corporate ranks, Samantha was a professional athlete. She represented Great Britain in the 2000 Sydney Olympics in both the 200m and the 4x100m relay events. Prior to the Olympics, she won two medals in the Olympic AAA trials – a silver medal for the 200m and a bronze for the 100m – as well as a silver medal in the 4x100m relay during the European Junior Championships in 1997. Her personal records include 11.40 seconds in the 100m and 23.02 seconds in the 200m.
Samantha is a personal trainer and group exercise coach through the American Fitness and Aerobics Association (AFAA) and International Sport Science Association (ISSA).