The thought of working out—if you’re not a regular gym-goer—can be daunting. What’s a good workout plan? How do you stick to it? And, strength training? Where do you even begin? Here’s how to make a workout plan that’s easy to make and maintain.
How To Make a Workout Plan: Start With The Shoes
Wondering how to make a workout plan that’s effective? Before you get started, invest in the right gear. Knowing you have a decent pair of running shoes or athletic apparel to carry you through a grueling cardio workout is sometimes all the motivation necessary. Here’s what we suggest:
9 Tips On How To Make a Workout Plan That’s Simple
Right now, your workout might look a little something like this: hop on the treadmill, listen to a podcast or your favorite playlist, and hop off at the 30-minute mark. You got your doctor-recommended cardio for the day, but you’re not seeing the results you’d like—just sore muscles and a lot of frustration.
Here are 9 tips on how to make a workout plan that simple and easy to maintain.
1. Plan one week ahead.
Before you step foot on the treadmill or head over to the weight bench, plan your workout. Ideally planning your workouts one-week in advance will help you stay on track. The American College of Sports Medicine suggests 20 minutes of intense cardio three times per week—then, part of your gym time on these three days should include strength training exercises. Two additional days should focus on active rest—a short jog or walking the dog will do!
2. Be strategic.
If you’re known to skip your cardio because you’re just too tired after a lift, do it first. Plan you workouts with the hardest part in mind. Do whatever it is you find challenging first; leave the easy moves for last. By being strategic, you’ll eventually trick yourself into completing an entire workout with ease.
3. Warm-up first.
Never, ever forget to warm-up. Slowly warming up the body before a workout increase mobility and decreases your chance of injury. Skip it and you’re asking for trouble.
4. Mix it up.
Workouts are hard to maintain if they’re monotonous. Don’t get stuck in a rut. Mix up your workouts with a variety of cardio, strength training, and calming exercises.
5. Sprint it out.
A steady-state run is great when you’re training for a marathon or want to rev up your endurance. If you’re looking to rev up your metabolism, try adding sprints to your routine. They will help build leg muscles and can help you get the results you want a bit faster.
6. Work in intervals.
Avoid staying at the same pace for an extended period of time, especially on the treadmill. Work in intervals to mix up your routine and keep your body on its toes. Treat your everyday workout like a HIIT (high-intensity interval training) class and burn more fat.
7. Don’t stop.
Motivate yourself with a mantra. Reward yourself after you hit a goal. Whatever you need to do to keep yourself moving, do it. Don’t stop—you’ll never reach your fitness goals on the couch!
If you always leave your workout sweaty and hyped up, you won’t remember it fondly. Cool down and set your mind at ease after every workout—even cardio days. Five-minutes of yoga poses or stretching exercises can calm your heart rate and leave you at peace.
9. Keep track.
Document everything. The absolute best way to maintain a workout plan is to keep up with your progress. Track your mileage on the treadmill (and how fast you got there!). Log how much you were able to lift. Soon, you’ll learn what works for your body type and what doesn’t—then, you can adjust your workouts accordingly.
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