How Often Should You Work Out?
If you’ve been reading my other blogs so far in this series of articles on "Where to start with exercise", then you’ll know that I think we should prioritise strength training over cardio training and that within that strength training there is 4 primary movement skills that we should be developing. The purpose of these previous articles was to develop a clear target for our time spent exercising: "What are we trying to do?" (Get Stronger)
and then "Stronger At What? (Push ups / Pull ups etc) So the next logical question is: “How do we put this all into practice?” Considering that we don’t actually get stronger while exercising but actually in the recovery days post-exercise then in order to make progress we need to keep returning to the same exercises on a frequent enough basis to have an opportunity to build on the progress made in the last session and compare the results.
Train too often and we haven’t fully recovered yet. Too rarely and our bodies regress, forgetting what it is we’re trying to do, forcing us to start over at square one again. The optimum time between sessions will vary depending on your training experience and the skills being worked on but it is important to have a plan so you know when you are ready to train again. Therefore it is important to have a consistent routine, usually on a weekly basis, of what you plan to do when. This is referred to as your “TRAINING SPLIT” and there are many different ways to break up your training depending on the amount of time you have available and your level of experience (as this affects the amount of recovery time you need and therefore how often you can train).
For the rest of the article I will look at how I would recommend splitting up your sessions based on the amount of time you have free to devote to your training,