Actually, How Often Should You Work Out?

Determining how often you should work out can get pretty tricky. While the Mayo Clinic recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week, 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week, or a combination of both, it ultimately depends on your overall health and goals.

So, no, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, but there are alternative ways to figure out how often you should exercise – through trial and error. Below, I’m sharing with you a step-by-step guide to help you determine how often you should work out.

Start slow and work your way up
To really find your baseline, you should start slow and keep increasing your workouts – both the duration and the intensity. Each week add more weights, time. A good rule of thumb is to start with two to three workouts per week and go from there. If you want to start with more, by all means, go for it. But make sure you don’t reach a point of burnout and run the risk of losing motivation and giving up altogether. Also, make sure you keep it exciting so it feels like fun and makes you happy. Plus, there’s no faster way to injure yourself than to go balls-to-the-walls with your workouts. You’re on a journey, so enjoy the ride!

Listen to your body
It’s definitely important to challenge yourself. After all, that’s a surefire way to get stronger and faster. But don’t do that at the expense of your health and body. Every athlete in the world will tell you that a key component of training is about listening to your body and adapting your program to deal with your challenges and ailments. Does your hamstring hurt? Take the day off and stretch. Do you feel like you’ll have a mental breakdown if you go to the gym tonight? Go for a walk around your neighborhood instead.

Don’t treat it like a chore
Again, maintaining a positive mentality is crucial to building up your workout routine. To maintain and improve upon a truly robust workout schedule, it’s important to keep your exercises fresh. If you ever get to a point where you feel like exercising is just checking off another box, consider switching something up. Ideally, you’ll get to a point where you’re looking forward to that release of energy every day.

XX, ByJenniferlynn

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What You Should Actually Eat Before and After a Workout

We’re a few months into the year, and it’s time to kick those New Year’s resolutions up a notch (or you know, restart it). They say abs are made in the kitchen, but what does that actually mean?

Whether you’re working out to slim, bulk, tone, or just stay healthy, I’m sharing my best tips on what to eat both before and after your workouts.

What does the body need before a workout?
As expected, needs tend to vary based on the type, time, and intensity of a workout. I will explain that timing is everything in pre-workout eating choices. Two to four hours before, I encourage eating a small meal that won’t weigh too heavy on the stomach or throw off your digestion. If you’re pressed for time and only have 30 to 60 minutes before your workout, I will say, “look for snacks that contain carbohydrates and have less than four grams of fat, 10 grams of protein, and five grams of fiber.”

Also, overnight oats, smoothies heavy in fruit, and chia pudding can be great starters before a workout. Foods closer to the workout, “Things like a banana, white mini bagel, one ounce of pretzels, fruit leather (dried fruit), eight ounces of a sports drink, a jam sandwich on white bread, or sports gummies work great.” Rule of thumb: complex carbs early and simpler carbs when you’re in a pinch.

What does the body need after a workout?
To repair the body after putting in work, protein and carbohydrates are both crucial, remember, “post-workout snacks are meant to replenish your body and initiate muscle growth, and therefore should be eaten within one to two hours after the completion of a workout.” Though sweating can stir up some serious munchies, I encourage keeping portion sizes in control and, of course, drinking lots of water.

Post-workout snack ideas
Time is of the essence when that post-gym hunger hits. For quick and effective snacks, I recommend apples with nut butter or whole-grain crackers with hummus to hit a solid macro ratio. If you have a bit more time, I recommend a protein smoothie. Some recipes consists of “eight to 10 ounces of liquid of your choice, 15 to 20 grams of your favorite protein powder, one tablespoon of nut butter, and a pinch of cinnamon.”

“A grain bowl made with quinoa, veggies, and chicken is a great option. You can also try two street tacos with black beans, veggies, and cheese paired with a piece of fruit and some chocolate milk.” I also think that adding chocolate milk can help replenish electrolytes, carbs, and protein after a workout.

As always, consult your doctor or nutritionist before trying supplements or switching up your diet.

ByJenniferlynn

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