What is the best exercise routine?
It's important to note that there are two very important components to a good workout. Firstly, there's aerobic training (cardio), which requires an elevation of the heart-rate for an extended period of time. Secondly, there's strength training, which uses either one's own bodyweight or the use of weights to apply stress on specific muscle groups. While many may still believe that cardio is best for weight loss and strength training is best for muscle growth and strength gains, the truth is that they should be combined for best results either way.
Try this at-home workout!
The below workout framework is an example of how to combine cardio and strength training to aid with increases in strength. This workout assumes that you have some of the basic home gym essentials on-hand, but is also not overly reliant on equipment. This means that even if you have nothing more than a pull-up bar, some dumbbells and a bit of floor space, this could work for you. It is important to note that this workout combined with a high calorie food program will offer better results but is suitable for all.
Adjust weights and sets to suit your fitness level and time available. We promise, you'll work up an excellent burn with this full-body, at-home workout guide!
Step 1: You want to work out with at least one exercise for each of these muscle groups 2-3 times a week and pair the routine with some cardio training to warm-up and cool down:
• Quads (front of your legs)
• Glutes and hamstrings (back of your legs and butt)
• Chest, shoulders, and triceps (“push” muscles)
• Back, biceps, and grip (“pull” muscles)
• Core (abdominals and lower back)
Step 2: Choose which of the below exercises you want to perform for each muscle set in the workout:
• Quads (squats, lunges, one-legged squats and box jumps etc.)
• Glutes and hamstrings (deadlifts, hip raises, straight leg deadlifts, good mornings and step ups etc.)
• Chest, shoulders and triceps (overhead press, bench press, incline dumbbell press, push-ups and dips etc.)
• Back, biceps and forearms (chin-ups, pull-ups, bodyweight rows and dumbbell rows etc.)
• Abs and lower back (planks, side planks, exercise ball crunches, mountain climbers, jumping knee tucks and hanging leg raises etc.)
For example, a typical workout could look like the below:
• Barbell Squats (5 sets of 5 reps)
• Barbell Deadlifts (3 sets of 3 reps)
• Push-ups/Dips (3 sets of 15 reps)
• Pull-ups/Inverted Rows (3 sets of 8 reps)
• Planks (3 sets, 1-minute hold each)
Step 3: Track your weights, reps and durations to ensure that you're pushing harder and getting stronger with each movement each week. Remember to change things up while cycling through your muscle groups. Doing the same workout over and over will only serve to plateau your progress. Keep your body guessing and moving in different ways to truly increase strength, endurance and flexibility.