How often should I change my exercise program to get the most benefit?

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For me I get bored really easily so I usually like to switch things up on a weekly basis. However, if I am trying to track my progress, am sticking to a particular training program or a time challenge of some sort, then I make sure to change it up in 4-6 weeks. Our bodies are so smart and it learns how to adapt to the exercises, and you will plateau. In other words, you will not burn as many calories as you did when you first started the program. Switching things up in this timeframe also helps keep you mentally focused so you won't get burned out and you will reduce the risk of overuse injuries (because you are repeating the same plane of motion over and over etc.) Main thing is to keep your workouts intense as your body responds to intensity not a timeframe or rep count. Have fun and make it a lifestyle..love to learn new ways to keep your body guessing and you will develop the skills necessary to truly love being healthy and fit.

I think one of the best quotes I have ever heard is, "most workouts work until they stop working."  There are some general ballpark figures as how long you should workout but for the most part there just comes a point where mentally and physically you reach a plateau and that is the time when new workouts should be formulated.

In my experience almost always the mind will plateau before the body.  Our mind is need of constant stimulus so doing the same thing over and over again (although beneficial) can cause our mind to get relaxed, used to what we are doing and ultimately bored. 

There is a very important technique called periodization where there is a plan to how you construct your training plans over a given time in phases.  These phases are pre constructed and a plan is initiated for a particular goal. 

The first step is to set a goal (through proper vision), then the strategy must be laid out.  That is where periodization takes place and a plan is carefully constructed where training is changed every 2-6 weeks with the goal in mind changing everything from exercises, reps, tempo and intensity.  These phases are calculated specifically with the goal in mind.

This tecnhique is obviously incredibly effective but can be very very confusing and hard to figure out if you are just beginning.  The good news?

Periodization is automatic in your program with Sharecare.  If you are in a gym make sure to find a trainer who believes and constructs your plan using periodization instead of having an instinctive attitude.

Your body adapts to training fairly quickly and needs to be challenged and surprised on a continual basis. Change your exercise program every 4-6 weeks to continue to progress and see results. 

Try varying the exercise selection, the frequency (how often), the intensity (how hard) and the duration. (how long) to keep mixing up your workouts!

Physically and mentally you will plateau. When you plateau you stop seeing as many or any physical and mental benefits. It's important to be able to realize when you are plateauing physically and mentally so that you can change up your exercise program. The body gets used to doing the same thing over and over and at some point stops adapting because there is nothing new to adapt to. This is why it's important to introduce new activities into your workout.

It is also psychologically important to try new and different things that you think you'll like and have fun with. This will give help increase your confidence. When you find something new you like it will improve your motivation. Most people will generally find new benefits in new and different things that you may have never imagined. 

To achieve the most benefit from an exercise program, it is important to first establish a goal such as improved health, weight loss, muscle gain, toning, etc.This makes it easier to design your program and decide how often it should change because different goals often require different types and amounts of exercise to be achieved. Regardless of the goal(s), the ultimate intent of an exercise program is to stimulate/overload the body with the correct amounts of intensity and frequency necessary to make it change or adapt.

Continue Learning about Types Of Exercise

Types Of Exercise

Types Of Exercise

Exercise provides many health benefits - from fitness to increased physical and mental energy. In order to prepare yourself for a exercise routine, you need to research which exercise is right for you and how to fit a new exercise ...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.