What is the perfect work:life:gym life ratio?
As trainers, we are frequently asked the question “what the perfect training routine consists of?”. Honestly, there is no right or wrong or even a perfect ratio; it is very much down to individual lifestyle circumstances and activity preferences. What a lot of people tend to forget is that everyone has different training goals; some may want to bulk whilst others want to lose weight but most importantly, you need to do what you ENJOY and what makes you happy to encourage sustainable active behaviour. Also, the training routine that works for you now may not work for you in 6 months time or even 2 weeks time and so the most important question you need to ask yourself is what routine is best not only for your schedule but also your training goals. Any form of training has its benefits and so exercise of any nature is a fantastic lifestyle choice in itself!
How can I be time-efficient?
The most common barrier to exercise is a lack of time and so being time-efficient is a crucial strategy to ensure exercise is a sustainable lifestyle around your routine. Therefore you should consider making a list of everything you want to achieve on a week-by-week basis. Do you want to enjoy some exercise but also want to see your friends and family? Perfect, find an activity that you all enjoy! Whether that be hitting some group classes together or even going for a nice stroll or bike ride in the local park! What’s really important to consider is that exercise should not be seen as a chore, the more enjoyable the activity, the easier you will find it to fit into your lifestyle.
Another way to be time-efficient is to carefully select your duration vs. intensity of exercise. For example, do you only have 20 minute slots here and there rather than 45-60 minutes altogether? Not a problem! The growing HIIT phenomenon is fantastic for those with a lack of time. The high intensity nature of the exercise means that 10 minutes of this exercise has the same health benefits as 30 minutes of moderate intensity such as going for a walk.
Furthermore, most people think that they need to drive 20 minutes each way to get to a gym 3-5 times a week. Well that’s certainly not the case! Even body weight exercises at home are tremendous facilitators of good health and so if driving to the gym is only feasible 2-3 times or even once a week, then you can easily make up those sessions at home. Additionally, with the growing popularity of exercise for health, there are many ways in which you can access training programmes such as multiple phone apps and youtube videos available to give you some guidance for training at home.
Hopefully this allows you to see that there is no perfect exercise routine and that it’s just a case of doing what’s best for YOU.
Top tip: when people miss a training session or overindulge, they tend to mentally beat themselves up due to regret of their previous behaviour. Alternatively you should learn from these weaknesses to help you make better choices going forwards. Remember, health status is interchangeable and so as long as you take positive steps going forwards, your health will benefit!