On varying workouts

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
On varying workouts
6
Mon, 04-14-2003 - 10:44am
Soleil, anyone? We've talked about making sure to change your workout every few weeks. Is it better to stick to one workout for a few weeks and then change it or to keep changing it each time? I'm wondering especially with lifting if I should stick to one thing, like supersets, drop sets, etc. and change in a few weeks or to just keep varying it each time I go. My gut feel is that I should stick to one for a few weeks and then change.






iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-14-2003 - 12:14pm
My trainer recommends choosing a date and changing things up on that day each month. Being flexible with my routine has been essential throughout this. I'm not always in the same gym (sometimes I go to Tripler's or Hickham's if I have to be on that side of the island) and there are times when my home gym is so packed that I can't get a machine or bench that I want so I do something else. It is all very fluid for me in general, so when the time comes I'm really only shaking up order and cardio times/intensities or how I break down my sets (supersets, dropsets, etc.) now. With lifting I keep 4 or 5 exercises on hand per muscle group and cycle through them doing 2 to 3 per session, so the next time I lift I'm targeting that muscle differently with a different exercise. I tend to keep with one "style" of lifting for the entire month though.

Hope this helps!

~K~

~Kiervin~

Co-author of:  MONSTER'S INK HORROR ANTHOLOGY By Cyber-Pulp Press

Avatar for soleilune
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Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-14-2003 - 2:15pm
Here's my rule of thumb: Follow one routine for approx. the first six months. (This applies to people just getting started.) After your body has learned to do this routine, carefully & w/ good form & you begin to feel bored or like you're stagnating, make a change. After this, change things every 6 weeks - 3 months, depending on how frequently you workout.

Make any change you like, ie.- up the weight/ decrease reps, change exercises or equipment used, changes the format (as in switching from ascending sets to descending/drop sets, full body workout to split routine, etc.). The list of changes you can make are practically endless.

If you have very specific goals in mind it is important to plan your workout & maintain it. If you have no set goals or have achieved them & want to maintain or just tweak things a bit, you can be much more flexible in your choices. For myself, since I teach fitness classes, I have little control over my choices, so my personal workout must be flexible & ever-changing to meet my needs around the demands my profession. I seldom do the same thing twice as a result & this works well for me, but wouldn't for someone w/ little experience that doesn't really know how to listen to their body. This flexible format is more appropriate for experienced exercisers that have a good understanding of what works for them (safely) & how to achieve it.

Soleilune
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Mon, 04-14-2003 - 2:27pm
Yes, that helps a lot. So I should stick to one for awhile and then change. You're so lucky to have a trainer weekly!





iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Mon, 04-14-2003 - 2:31pm
Thanks--I don't have a particular goal so I've been pretty flexible but now I think I've been too flexible. I'll stick with one and then change in a few weeks.

Oh, another question I just thought of, about variety. Do I need to stick to the same exercises? I've been doing whatever is free. For example, one day I'll do lat pull downs and rows, the next time lat pull downs, reverse flyes, etc. Should I stick to the same ones until I switch or does it not matter? Thanks






Avatar for soleilune
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Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-14-2003 - 2:48pm
Some people will disagree, but I feel its better to maintain some flow, than be real strict about what exercise you're doing. As long as you're targeting the correct muscle group I really don't see why you shouldn't pick another exercise & keep things moving, rather than stand around waiting for the chance to do what you planned ahead. My personal routine is more often dictated by what equipment is available than anything else. Those of us w/ kids need to make the most of our 'personal time', so feel free to change up when need be.
Soleilune
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Mon, 04-14-2003 - 4:05pm
Thanks--that clears up a lot of questions I had. (nt)