If you want to lose weight– and keep it off– exercise is absolutely vital. While a nutritious diet can kickstart your weight loss journey, studies show that people who keep off the weight in the long-term are those who also exercise frequently.
A weekly workout plan doesn’t have to be stressful. In fact, having a strategy when you head to the gym or roll out your yoga mat at home will help you feel confident and stay focused. That’s why we’ve created this guide on how to create a workout plan you’ll stick to.
Tired of fitness routines that just don’t engage you? Switch it up with a DIY workout plan you can design in 4 easy steps. Let’s get started!
How to Create a Workout Plan in 4 Steps
The basic recommendation for exercise in adults who want to lose weight is 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. This translates to at least 30 minutes of exercise 5 days a week or 25 minutes of exercise 6 days a week.
Experts also suggest that incorporating different types of exercise, including:
- Aerobic (cardio)
- Resistance (weight lifting)
- Flexibility (yoga and stretching)
Incorporating all of these types of physical activity into your workout plan doesn’t just aid in weight loss. It also improves other markers of general health and well being.
With these considerations in mind, you can design a workout plan to help you lose weight. Let’s get started with Step 1.
Step 1: Define Your Goals
Before you can hit the gym, you need to figure out what your goals are for your workout plan. And as with any plan, you need these to be SMART goals. That means they need to be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and achievable within a specific time-frame.
A specific fitness goal can be to lose weight. But it also needs to be measurable in that you should know how much weight you want to lose and what time-frame you want to lose it in. Make this goal attainable, though– don’t set a goal of losing 100 pounds in 2 weeks because that goal isn’t recommended or even possible.
Finally, make sure your weight loss and fitness goals are relevant. If you already eat a nutritious diet and exercise frequently, is the goal of losing 100 pounds relevant to your health? Similarly, if your doctor has recommended you lose 100 pounds, is working out only one day a week relevant to your needs?
As an example, here’s what your SMART goal might look like:
- Specific: I want to lose weight
- Measurable: I want to lose 50 pounds
- Attainable: I want to lose 50 pounds in a reasonable amount of time
- Relevant: I want to lose 50 pounds in a reasonable amount of time to improve my health
- Time-frame: I want to lose 50 pounds in 6 months to improve my health
Step 2: Create Your Workout Schedule
Do you have time for a 30-minute workout 5 days a week? How about an hour-long gym session twice a week and a 30-minute group fitness class once a week? Or maybe you prefer to spread out your workouts in 25-minute sessions over 6 days of the week.
There’s no one correct way to schedule your workouts. And if your weekly schedule varies, tweak your workout schedule to vary with it. As long as you get the recommended 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity exercise, you’ll start losing weight in no time.
Keep in mind that if you’re exercising for medical weight loss purposes, working out for more than 150 minutes per week can help. Also, following a nutritious diet and taking care of your mental health can contribute to a healthier version of you.
Step 3: Choose Exercises You Love
It may be tempting to choose the exercises you see people doing at the gym or the trendy workouts you may find online. But a workout plan you can stick to is different. A fitness routine you can stick to is made up of only those exercises you enjoy.
Don’t know what you enjoy? You may benefit from signing up for some workout classes at the local gym. But don’t just limit yourself to pilates and spinning classes; try something exciting and unique like rock climbing, boxing, or Zumba.
And if you discover multiple workout styles that suit your needs, don’t be afraid to incorporate all of them into your routine. After all, switching up your workouts is one of the best ways to avoid plateauing, which means you’ll continue to lose weight and gain muscle.
While choosing your routine, do keep in mind the 3 different types of exercise. For example, a well-rounded routine might look like:
- Day 1: Moderate-intensity yoga for 25 minutes (flexibility)
- Day 2: Jogging and fast-walking for 25 minutes (aerobic)
- Day 3: 25-minute weight lifting for upper body muscle groups (resistance)
- Day 4: Moderate-intensity gymnastics for 25 minutes (flexibility)
- Day 5: 25-minute Zumba class (aerobic)
- Day 6: 25-minute weight lifting for lower body muscle groups (resistance)
Step 4: Don’t Punish Yourself
Weight loss is just as reliant on mental fitness as it is physical. Don’t beat yourself up over missing a workout or shame yourself for taking the week off when you’re sick. If you’ve created your fitness routine with the steps above in mind, you’ll have years to make up for that missed day or week with a workout plan that works for life.
A Custom Workout Plan for Weight Loss
Do you know how to create a workout plan, but don’t have enough time or energy to do it yourself? Divine Weight Loss in Riverview, Florida can help. Learn more about our weight loss programs and contact us today to get into the shape of your life!