Exercise classes, strength programs, endurance programs, there are so many options when it comes to working out. Which is the right for you? Partly, it depends on what your goals are but mostly, it is about the one you will follow through the plan. In school for personal training, I learned all about periodization cycles and phases for working out. While working as a personal trainer, I developed individualized plans for each client. I took what I learned from working one on one with specific goal driven clients to a small group setting, there was a lot of overlap in what I was having people do to reach personal goals. The science behind exercise is incredible and can really help you get to specific goals. I saw though, the average person does not have such specific goals, and may not need such specific training models. That is part of what drove me to offer small group classes.
I have long said the abundance of workout styles ensures that you can find one you enjoy. Now, some people never look forward to going to their workout. They should, however, find the enjoyment in how they feel after a workout, or in improvements to their overall daily life. When deciding what type of exercise, it can help to look back to your childhood. What type of activity did you enjoy? Dancing, try zumba. Band, check out pound. Playing on the playground, hit up a ninja gym. Biking or running around all day, check out Orange Theory Fitness. Pick up games of kickball, basketball, or football, go to your local CrossFit gym. You also don’t have to settle one an individual style of training. An example of that is my March 2022 workout calendar. I have dance rehearsal days, cardio days, circuit training days, strength days, and stretching/active recovery days. Some days, I even do two different styles. The dance company I am in does a lot of partner work, as a partner I am both a base and a flier. I need to have my flexibility, endurance, and strength working in combination to make me my best.
Some people like figuring out how to construct their own workouts. Finding how to push themselves, grow towards goals, and celebrate the sweet success of personal achievements. Other people know what they want, and know they don’t know how to get there. Finding a coach or trainer to design programs is a great way to accomplish their goals. People who are intrinsically motivated are often those who enjoy figuring out everything on their own. The majority of people, however, are extrinsically motivated, so finding a coach or trainer who motivates you in a way you respond can be key to their success. As a species, people are social beings who thrive on connection. Creating accountability partners, or a healthy mindset community is paramount to staying the course for the majority of people. I really think that is why we have seen the explosion of various types of fitness classes the last 5-10 years.
There are many tools these days to help plan a workout. As you know, we use Polar products at boot camp. I have the Polar Ignite fitness watch myself. Even within the watch, I have a few options. It will suggest a type of exercise for the day, based on data including my sleep, recent activity, and the scale in conjunction with my listed weight goal. There is also running programs to train for specific races. I currently have set my own “season plan”, where I choose what days I do which kind of activity. It helps me to see what I have planned to make sure I am getting in everything I need for my goals. Before I started dancing regularly with the dance company, I shared a blog post about how to utilize the Season Planner. If you want to set your own plan, you can read more on what I did here.
As you go in search of your workout regimen, think of it as dating before marriage. You may like vinyasa yoga taught by a specific person; all vinyasa yoga taught by anyone; it could be you enjoy vinyasa, hatha, and restorative yoga taught by the same person, or maybe you just love all the yoga taught by all the people. You won’t know until you give it a chance. If you are not motivated to get your workout in, try something, or someone new.
How do you structure your workouts? I have shared my current structure. At Becka’s Boot Camp, we have people who only do classes here and people who use classes in conjunction with other activities.