When it comes to fitness, less is more. Promise. Hear me out. Please also understand that I am not saying this for us to be lazy nor to imply that we can put in less effort to get more results. Here’s what I mean:
If we do less of what does not matter and do more of what does matter, we can create a realistic and effective fitness routine.
When we let go of the FOMO of finding the newest, bestest, quickest fix to increase speed or tone that tummy … it leaves us in the space to focus on fitness fundamentals. We typically think that if we are doing super complex movements or the latest from some the top selling photoshopped fitness magazine that we are destined for greatness. This is actually a bummer because it shifts our fitness ADD riddled brain to the next fitness fad a few weeks later. We didn’t even track our initial results properly!! Or how about skipping so many workouts that we break up with our current plan and move on saying “Its not you, its me” when really we don’t think it is us and we blame the workout for not giving us a six pack or all star jammer status in 30 days or less.
Heres the deal … reaching your fitness goals (or any goal! Literally any goal in life!) requires a few fundamentals that we must stick to for the long haul.
1.ADHERENCE IS EVERYTHING
The only bad workout is the one you don’t do. Cliche – I know! And so freaking true its absurd. The #1 reason most workout plans fail is that the person FAILS TO DO THEM. If you’re going to start any kind of fitness plan, stick to it CONSISTENTLY for at least 8-12 weeks. Your workouts must
1) Be actually scheduled into your schedule
2) Fit into YOUR SCHEDULE.
(Oh you don’t have schedule/calendar you say? This is probably why every workout you’ve tried hasn’t worked!)
2. HAVE A SPECIFIC GOAL
Note: Being TONED is not a goal. Being jacked, tan and juicy AF actually is a goal. Ask my beefy trap monster bestie B-Train. Toning up is not a thing. What you are actually doing is BUILDING MUSCLE and DROPPING BODY FAT. Other goals may include INCREASING ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE which is actually a lot of time different from just BUILDING STRENGTH. SO lets go into each one and how to get it:
To build muscle you have to do something called Progressive Overload. Progressive Overload is a fancy way of saying “girl, that weight better weigh more than your purse.” For reals though – what this means is that over time the amount of weight you are using for each exercise MUST GO UP. No increase in weight, no muscle for you. Most women fear getting bulky or looking like a body builder. The reality is that bulk only happens when you build muscle AND fail to lose fat (ahem ahem put the fork down cuz that lean out is allll in the nutrition) or you trip and fall into a basket of steroids (so just watch out for buckets of steroid needles and you’ll be fine). It should be noted that muscle growth also cannot happen if calorie in take is too low.
DROPPING BODY FAT
This one is actually super easy. To get that “damn I look sexy naked” thing going on all you have to do is eat less calories than you burn (which helps murder the fat) AND weight train (so you don’t also accidentally murder your muscle mass). Yes that really is all.
Think I’m wrong on this one because you’ve tried every diet since the beginning of time? Get my 10 Day Athlete Nutrition 101 Program here
INCREASING ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE
This is where it gets a little tricky because many of us are trying to do too many sports at once. I’ll just say it. CALM THE FUCK DOWN AND PICK ONE SPORT TO ACCELERATE IN. The biggest mistake I see is derby skaters who want to increase agility while also training for a half marathon. (I may or may not have actually been one of these people. Ok…I definitely was one of these people.) Now the issue is that running at a steady state for long distance in a slow repetitive movement is the ENEMY of fast twitch muscles for big power blocks, multi-directional movements and fast feet for agility. I am not saying don’t do both … what I am saying is don’t expect one to help you get better at the others.
Here are the basic areas of athletic performance:
Acceleration – Going from zero to hero speed e.g. sprints, sprints with resistance
Strength – Ability to lift heavier weights e.g. pick up heavy stuff and put it back down
Power (Strength with Speed) – Ability to move more weight faster e.g. plyometrics, weighted explosive movements
Agility – Fast feet/ability to change direction quickly e.g. agility ladders/multi directional sprints/cone drills
Endurance – Long Steady Distance (Marathons) e.g. jogging, swimming, biking
Endurance – High Intensity Intervals (Derby Jams) e.g. sprints (hills, stairs, sleds, full body movements *burpees!*
So pick a goal (or complimentary goals) and work on it for 8-12 weeks but don’t try and do 100 things at once. It will get you exactly no where. Need help picking a goal? Click Here
3. INCLUDE ALL MOVEMENT DIRECTIONS
To have a well rounded fitness program, regardless of the goal, we must include workouts that hit all of our muscle groups. Just to beat that dead horse a few more times – it can be super simple without going into every muscle in the body and there are only a few things we actually NEED to include.
Pull – pull ups for vertical pull and rows for a horizontal pull
Push – over head press for a vertical press and push ups or bench press for a horizontal press
Squat – do you need an explanation on this one? Drop it like it’s hot.
Hinge – deadlift or kettle bell swings
Core – a combo of sit ups, Russian twists, leg raises hit the majority of it
Conditioning – HIIT or Long Steady Distance depending on goals
Frequency is a matter of preference and realistic time you have to spend sweating away at the gym. I prefer a 3 or 4 day split during the derby season and when not in season I prefer to hit the gym 5 days per week with an optional 6th day of full body exercise.
5 Day Split – Work each area to death once per week
4 Day Split – Push, Pull, Hinge, Squat (core and cardio on push/pull days)
3 Day Split – Upper, Lower, Full Body OR 3 Full Body Workouts
So to send you off on your way with a snuggle and a big bow …
here’s the long and the short of it. If you are doing NOTHING right now, get your booty off the couch and DO SOMETHING. Adherence to ANYTHING is better than the occasional fancy workout.
That being said if you are going to do something, get the most bang for you energetic buck. There are a million exercises out there that fit these simple requirements. Find the ones you love to do and do them long enough and with enough regular increases in resistance to get results.
Or let me help you find them.