Fitness looks different to everyone. Whether you enjoy grinding through a WOD several times a week, prefer to hit the mat for some much-needed chill out time or opt for muscle-building outdoor workouts, our healthy routines are all different. Whichever your preference, each is loaded with mental and physical benefits; but, when you’re in need of a little structure, how do you go about rebuilding a well-balanced exercise routine? Below, Third Space Elite Personal Trainer Stu Slater shares a handful of tips that are ideal for bringing about a sense of structure to your fitness game.
First Things First…
“The main thing, initially at least, is to find exercises you enjoy. Start with smaller, manageable commitments,” Slater explains. “You don’t need to kill yourself training every minute of every day. Out of the 168 hours we have in a week, you can dramatically change your body with just three of them.” He’s not wrong — just three hours of training accounts for less than 2% of your time, so make it work for you.
How to Balance Your Training
Strength and endurance? Cardio and mobility? Stretching, or laps in the pool? Whichever your choice, it can be daunting to rebuild a plan that works for you. “Build your week around the hardest training session(s) and take the most rest before repeating it again,” says Slater. “99% of the time, these will be strength days, but for people newly returning, it can just as easily be cardio against heavy endurance days. As a rule, simply alternate higher intensity with lower intensity days.”
Don’t Stop Working (Out) From Home
We’ve all done our fair share of at-home fitness over the past 18 months and it’s no secret that they can be effective. Put simply, home workouts have their place within a well-structured routine — especially if you’re consistent with them. “Ultimately, if one makes you more consistent than the other, then stick with what works for you,” says Slater, advising that a gym is a safer place to push yourself. “Stick with what you know at home and safely push the boundaries at the gym.”
Have a Breather
Everyone loves a rest day, so make sure you’re not missing yours. But allocating enough time for rest can be a tricky game. “If your muscles are sore then rest for three to five days,” says Slater. “If not, then rest instinctively.” However, as Slater suggests, be sure to “keep in mind that muscle growth happens, predominantly, during deep sleep, relaxation and eating. So less is often more in this sense. ‘Stimulation, not annihilation’ as the saying goes.”
Ask for Help
Still unsure where to start? Our bookable PT sessions are an ideal starting point for moving well, performing better and improving your health, no matter your goal. Similarly, our group exercise classes — including our signature The WOD, SweatX and Formula 3 formats — will help you build confidence on the gym floor, learn new skills and get fitter in the process. Seems like a win-win.
Mix It Up
Variety is the spice of life — and it’s the same for your workouts. Keep your training week varied and you’ll see gains in both physical and mental strength. “From both a progress point of view as well as your interest and enjoyment factor, it’s crucial,” says Slater. “The biggest mistake people make is exchanging long term goals for short term instant gratification. Variety is key, but the key should still fit a very specific door that you aim to open.”