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.