Our personal trainers here at Abu Dhabi Personal Trainers have come up with a workout structure that will help ensure you get the most out of your workouts. Whether your goal is weight loss, fat loss, building muscle or anything in between, use the below structure as a guideline for how to plan your workouts!
1. Have a plan
Have a plan before entering the gym. Whether you write your plan down on your phone, a piece of paper or even your hand, you should go to the gym knowing what you are going to be doing that day. This should include exercises, sets, reps, rest times ect. Our personal trainers recommend writing out all of your workouts for a week in advance, that ensures you schedule rest days and have an even workout schedule between circuits, intervals, upper body, lower body etc.
No matter what workout you have planned you should always make sure you warm up. Our personal trainers recommend doing 5-15 minutes of light to moderate cardio (treadmill walking, sitting on the stationary bike) to get your muscles warm and then 5-15 minutes of dynamic stretching, focusing on the muscles you will be using that day. A great warm up is one of the best ways to avoid injury and prepare you to dominate your workout.
3. Complete compound and challenging exercises first
Your first exercises should always be the most challenging exercises. These are typically compound movements – movements that involve more than one muscle to complete or movements that are most challenging. These include: deadlifts, squats, bench press, overhead press, etc. The reason for completing these exercises first is that you have the most energy at the beginning of your workout and your muscles are the most fresh and ready to go! As your workout progressing, both your muscles, energy and focus will start to fatigue and fade this is when you should be doing simpler movements like triceps extensions and bicep curls.
4. Keep your workout to under 45 minutes
Do not overdo it on your workouts! Working out is about quality, not quantity. Be efficient with your time, working on doing the right exercises. Our personal trainers explain that our testosterone levels peak at 30 minutes during our workouts and testosterone is key to helping us build muscle, burn fat, and stay lean (and no ladies it will not make you bulky!). This 45 minutes DO NOT INCLUDE YOUR WARM UP. Therefore, you may be at the gym longer taking into consideration your warm up and cool down routine.
5. Do abs last!
If you are performing your exercises correctly, all exercises should engage your core in some way. Therefore, you do not want to fatigue your core as you will need it for everything else you do in your workout! So save your core and ab specific training for the end of your workout.
The final step of your workout is your recovery. You do no grow in the gym, you grow during your recovery time. So make sure that you fuel your body with the right foods and get proper rest to ensure you see incredible results. After your workout, engage in a cool down period lasting 5 to 10 minutes. This should include light cardio and static stretching. Out personal trainers recommend incorporating foam rolling into your cool down routine.
If you are going to workout, you might as well do things right and get the most out of it. The workout structure above, when combined with the right exercises and workout plan will bring amazing results.