Ever see that person who works out super hard once a week, but doesn't return until next Monday? Maybe you've been that person and you're frustrated knowing the effort you give, while lacking to see results. One of the biggest questions I get, is "How often should I workout?"
Let me start by emphasizing there's no magic formula. When clients come in for their first consultation, we don't workout, instead we chat through their goals, medical and exercise history, run through a series of movement tests, then jot down some measurements to measure their progress. Bottom line, each and every one of us is so unique that what works for one is not a guarantee for the other.
That being said, two primary factors in any & all client success stories are water consumption and consistency. Consider the first a life-tip (we should all be drinking more water), but the second is your key to seeing results.
In general, I recommend strength training a minimum of 3 times a week, and here's why...
Supercompensation is a term in sports science describing the process your body undergoes following a workout. Eery time you workout, you're essentially breaking down tissue, creating microscopic tears in your muscle fibers, (this is how you develop new muscle). When we do this, we send our bodies into a bit of a shock– call this the "Oh Sh*t" moment, as your body quickly reacts by not only recovering back to your normal fitness level, but overcompensating in anticipation of whatever you have coming next. During this time (generally a 72hr window), you're body is prepared to perform at a higher capacity. The key is to catch your next workout, while your body is still in that overcompensating state, so as to build on what you did previously and develop that upward momentum towards your goals. Similarly, if you fail to catch your next workout within that 72hour window, your body's performance capacity will slowly drop back to your original baseline, making it difficult to see results, hence that person who only works out once or twice a week & is disappointed by their lack of progress.
Have you found yourself in one of these two categories?
While there's no magic formula to success, strength training 3x a week with added cardio on off days is a solid guide. Below is a graph I drew up to help demonstrate this process. Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions. I tend to geek-out over this, so while I don't want to overwhelm you, I'm more than happy to help!