When people find out I am a personal trainer I get asked so many questions. I love it because I spend so much time consuming information that I want to share with others. Seriously, I tell all my clients and friends it doesn’t do any good only in my head. I want people to do well and succeed. Plus, I enjoy reading and studying all this stuff to be able to break it down for everyone to understand. To me, fitness and nutrition shouldn’t be hard or make people feel defeated.
How do I get Started?
First of all, check with your doctor before starting or changing anything you do. If they give you the all clear, I would start by doing something you enjoy. If you like being outdoors, go on more trails. Go hiking. Find a trail near your house. Movement is EVERYTHING!! I love pilates, barre, and yoga type classes. Also acknowledging what you don’t like is just as important. I personally don’t do well in dance style classes. I feel awkward and uncomfortable.
I was at a fitness convention doing a cycle certification. During a break we got on the topic of different group fitness classes. One of the participants mentioned Zumba and MUVZ. They were an instructor of one or both – I don’t remember. I casually mentioned I struggle in those classes, and that won’t be a certification I’ll be getting anytime soon. The person leading the class said that it’s good acknowledge what’s not in your wheelhouse. Since then, I have encouraged me to realize both what they like and don’t like. We don’t have to like everything.
Cardio First or Second
IT DEPENDS! There is no specific rule to this question. I ALWAYS follow up with what’s your goal/purpose for the day? What are you working towards? If you focusing on lifting heavier in your workout I would do cardio last. The logic here is that you don’t want to give it your energy to running and have nothing to give lifting weights. Same can be for running if you lift first and heavier than normal weights, you won’t go as fast as normal because your muscles are tired.
How Long Should I workout?
This is COMPLETELY up to you. It’s your preference. There are so many other variables that play into this question. In my research, it is recommend for 150 minutes of moderate cardio each week. If you workout 5 days a week, that’s 30 minutes per day. That might seem reasonable, but if you are new to working out I would start at 10-15 minutes and go up for there.
When I train my clients or teach group fitness, I go off how they are feeling. In cycle class, I say this all the time “If you can have a conversation with your friend next to you speed up.” You should only be able to say a few words right now. Everyone is different and at different levels. Work at your level!
How Often Should I Stretch?
Again, another it depends or several follow up questions. Depends on what type of stretching you are doing. I recommend to my clients to do stretches that mimic the workout. If you ever take one of my group fitness classes, I TRY to finish every class with stretching. When I was teaching in California, I got so many compliments about including that in the workout. People come early for the next classes for my abs and cooldown.
I also usually stretching and mobility interchangeably – mobility at least 3 times a week, and focus on stretching on Sundays. I have become a big advocate of stretching because I am VERY tight. Most of my jobs have been sitting at a desk, so my shoulders and hamstrings have be
How Much Should I Lift?
This goes back to the how long should I work out. Everyone has a different level or version of what is heavy. I go back to what does it feel like for you. I am VERY particular about form. If you take away anything from me it’s stretching and form. Those are my things! But anyway, it’s all about form!! The weight is too light if you feel like you can do the exercise all day. it’s too heavy if you can’t do the workout in good form.
If you have a question you want answered, leave it in the comments. I will do another next month.