“What’s the best fitness workout routine? How can I tone up as fast as possible?”
This is the most common question I got as a personal trainer.
NEWS FLASH! The workout you do isn’t as important as many so called “experts” would have you believe.
In fact, when your nutrition is on point, you could do ten different types of workouts and get the same results from all of them.
So… is there an ideal routine you should be doing… read on and let’s get through the scams out there!
The “There’s a Best Fitness Workout Routine” Scam
Listen, I’m here to tell you the truth… and sometimes the truth sucks.
The “gurus” make money off you. They know they can sell you the flashy new routines.
Because most people constantly look for the “perfect routine.”
And they spend your money on crap.
I’m not saying there’s no value in getting a trainer or a fitness book or routine to get yourself in shape. After all, you don’t want to get injured.
All I’m saying is that you don’t need to keep shelling out money for some “guru’s” routine that’s just hyped up and full of gimmicks.
Before fitness was trendy… before it was a multi-billion dollar industry… there was a small group of people that worked out and made it their life to workout.
They didn’t have anything to sell.
Fast forward over 50 years… their workouts are still used by the people that know what they’re doing… the people with the best bodies.
But think about it… would you buy a 50-year old program? Probably not.
It’s got no sizzle.
And if you wanted to make money… you’d have to figure out a NEW way to sell it.
Hence… all the gimmicks and fads.
I Care About Your Greatness – So Here’s The Real Deal
Building a workout routine is really pretty simple.
But first of all, you need to know yourself. You need to learn what you like and what works for you.
There are benefits to doing the major types of workouts:
All of them will get you results… but I will tell you this. Weight training should be included no matter what you prefer. Even if you’re a die-hard yogi, you need weight training. Yoga, Pilates and most classes inevitably miss something and leave you incomplete.
A thorough weight-training program will get everything.
So let’s look at how to put together a SWEET workout routine… then we can look at how to balance other workouts like yoga and Pilates.
Building Your Fitness Routine Step 1 – The Split
Before you start any routine, you need to decide how to split up your workouts.
If you read the latest fitness books, the “gurus” will recommend a number of different splits.
Some will say to do a full body workout.
Some will say to split the body into two workout.
Some will say three times a week…
Who do you believe?
The answer is this… These gurus are full of crap! They don’t do what they tell YOU to do.
In fact, there was a time in my life when I was obsessed with finding the perfect routine. I read a half dozen books from so called “experts” that said to workout on a 2-day split.
When I looked at how these guys (and women) actually build their own amazing bodies…
They didn’t even do anything close to what they recommended.
The most common routine that fitness models and the “gurus” do is a 4-day split. That means they work their body over four different workouts.
Here’s an example:
- Monday – Chest, Biceps, Abs
- Tuesday – Legs
- Wednesday – Off
- Thursday – Shoulders, Triceps, Abs
- Friday – Back, Traps, Calves
- Saturday – Off
- Sunday – Off
This is the most common (and most effective) workout split and one I recommend you consider.
You’ll also notice that each workout has one large muscle group and one small muscle group. This is also a commonality between the most effective workouts.
Grouping a large muscle with a small ensures you stimulate the body’s growth hormone while preventing over-training the smaller muscle groups.
Building Your Fitness Routine Step 2 – The Sets & Reps
The next question I used to get all the time was how many sets and reps… it’s like people were obsessed with this.
Well, the answer is so simple it will probably surprise you.
Here it is:
- For large muscle groups do 3-4 exercises and 3-4 sets each exercise
- For small muscle groups do 2-3 exercises and 3 sets each exercise
How about reps…
- For strength – 5-6 reps
- For muscle building – 8-12 reps
- For endurance/toning – 15-20 reps
Not complicated. Not sexy.
Now you know why so many “gurus” feed you a load of garbage – they wouldn’t be able to sell you their books if they didn’t.
Building Your Fitness Routine Step 3 – The Routine
So let’s say you put together your 4-day split like the example above… but you also want to do some yoga, Pilates and stretching.
Here’s what your week would look like:
- Monday – Weights (Chest/Biceps/Abs)
- Tuesday – Weights (Legs)
- Wednesday – Yoga & Stretching
- Thursday – Weights (Shoulders/Triceps/Abs)
- Friday – Weights (Back, Traps, Calves)
- Saturday – Pilates
- Sunday – Off
If you did this routine, odds are you’d be in the best shape of your life. Period!
I realize most people wouldn’t want to do this routine, but that’s not the point of this post.
The point is to give you the truth about routines and to tell you exactly how to create a routine. Building a killer body takes a lot of work and dedication.
Most people don’t have it.
But anyone can do it. You can do it if you decide to commit and make it a priority.
But What About Cardio?
Yeah. Cardio is important. Very important. That’s why I’ll dive deep into cardio in my next post!