How long should I be at the gym?

Your goals determine workout times and the effectiveness of your training schedule. What are you training for specifically? Is it to lose bodyweight, or perhaps put on muscle mass? Maybe it’s to tone and strengthen your body. You will be surprised to know that all these variables require different pockets of time to get the most out of your workout. Perhaps your goals can also vary from one stage to the next. For instance, one of my long term goals for far too long was to find ways to lose weight. What kind of cardio is the most effective, how long should I do it for, and can this be a gym class? Do I have to use a certain machine? This took up a lot of my time for much of my adult life. I didn’t know the answer to the question because I was using old and expired training methods. Perhaps you are at that stage as well, where you’re tired of schedules and want to differentiate the workout routine. For simplicities sake, I will highlight a few points, to inform you of how effective it is to use different training methods and dispel the notion that one is superior to another. For weight loss predominantlyInstantly, many people will run straight towards a treadmill or some cardio equipment to get started. But did you know that cardio is only one small portion of the fat loss pie (no pun intended lol)? Cardio done more effectively will have a lot more impact on achieving your weight loss goals. For instance, long-duration (and utterly exhausting) cardio won’t be as effective long term, as HIIT. Walking or incidental exercise is more effective than straining yourself continuously. Most people aren’t aware of the effectiveness of these methods. HIIT is strenuous, but when you take this method on for 20 minutes a few times a week, you will notice a remarkable difference in your body shape! When you add incidental exercise to the mix, then you have a great recipe for continuous fat burning during the day. We need to understand here that there is only so much longer duration cardio can do for you, and it’s only effective at burning calories at that time. For example, HIIT is something you can do in shorter pockets of time, which gives you the afterburn effect. This leaves your body open to burning a lot more calories at rest. When your training is over, and you add some incidental exercise during the day, you continually throw logs into your metabolic fire. That keeps the fire burning all day long! This is definitely what you want to aim for. Summary: HIIT should only be 20 minutes of your time and become an all-out effort. It would be best if you were out of breath and exhausted at the end of your session (but of course, with some reserves left in the tank) Any longer than this, and you will be doing your body a disservice. Incidental exercise should also be relatively short. Break it up during the day. For example, walk to work in the morning, go for a walk at lunch, and walk in the afternoon. This gives your body a chance to use the sources of fuel you have on hand continuously.For Muscle building For strength: Strength building takes a bit more time than your usual training sessions. Because you have to lift quite heavy and spend more time in recovery, more time is required for your session. You will not be spending a lot of time lifting the weight, unfortunately. Rest is essential to recover and lift heavier loads. For these sessions, I recommend allowing 1- 1.5 hours. If you are a beginner, please don’t attempt these sessions. They should be reserved for those who know exactly how to make the best usage out of these sessions. For hypertrophy: These sessions should not be longer than 45 minutes to one hour. You will need to ensure weight is lifted correctly without too much time spent on recovery. We want to keep pushing those muscles to the brink of no return, so they can become damaged and then grow. That’s what causes hypertrophy. For fat loss: These sessions are intense, and require a lot less recovery. My best method is to take 2–3 exercise and perform them back to back. Rest periods after the third exercise should be 60 seconds and no more. This is a fast training timeframe, and you can get away with only 30 minutes of intense exercise. This is in the middle of hypertrophy and HIIT. I love this method of training because you put on muscle and become leaner at the same time.As you can see, every goal has different requirements. I recommend you decide what you would like to do, and they move ahead with a plan of action to achieve your goal. Make sure you add variety to your training and don’t spend too long in the gym at any given time. Even strength phases aren’t required as often. Allow for ample recovery, nutrition and of course, sleep! I hope you found this article useful and I would love you to upvote it if you did. Please also join me on my various social platforms and do go ahead and download your new year’s resolution pack – which has 7 days of free nourishing recipes. I’m also on Instagram

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