MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR GYM TIME WITH THE 5 W’S
By Tania Tetrault Vrga
Everyone wants to save time at the gym.
Lack of time is possibly the most common excuse for not exercising. With full time jobs and family responsibilities, it’s no wonder we are looking to spend less time at the gym. Fortunately, you don’t have to spend hours at the gym to get fit. Here are a few strategies to streamline your workouts without sacrificing results.
Even though this is about saving time at the gym, it all starts with preparation. Before you even arrive at the gym there are things you can do to ensure your workout doesn’t take hours. Consider the 5 Ws: who, what, when, where, and why.
The “Why” of fitness
You want to choose an exercise routine that allows you to use your time wisely. These should be physical activities you enjoy, and that are appropriate for the results you want to achieve with your workout. If you know your why, meaning what you want to achieve through exercise, you’ll be able to save a ton of time by eliminating any exercises that don’t help you reach your goals. Not sure where to start when it comes to goal setting? Check out our secrets of goal setting right here.
The “What” of fitness
Once you know what you want to accomplish, figure out exactly what exercises you will do once you get to the gym. Without a plan, we often end up wandering around the gym from machine to machine, wasting time.
For strength training, the plan should include movements, reps, sets, load and rest times. Choose full body exercises, called compound exercises, that work more than one muscle group at a time. You can construct a full body workout that can be completed in 30 minutes or less if you include Squats or deadlifts along with presses, pulls and core work.
For cardio and conditioning, you should know exactly what movements or machines you will use, what intensity you will be working at, and what your work and rest times will be. To save even more time choose high intensity intervals or circuit training so that you can get your heart rate up even as you get stronger and build muscle.
Your ideal routine might not require any special equipment at all. you can save lots of time by working out at home. Check out our No Equipment workouts right here. We originally prepared these as vacation workouts, but you can do them anytime, anywhere, including at home, and most of them take under 15 minutes to complete.
The “Who” of fitness
This refers to who else will be involved in your workout plans. You may opt to enlist the help of a personal trainer, or do a group class. This works well because the trainer or instructor will take care of programming your workouts, and make sure that you stay on track and complete the work. You might also choose to workout with a partner, they might not have the same skills as a trainer but they can help motivate you by making sure that you show up and stick to the plan. Lastly, consider who will make up your support team, perhaps your spouse or other family member can assist with childcare so that you can schedule your workouts. This can be a game changer for parents.
The “When” and “Where” of fitness
The timing and location of your fitness regime can make or break it. If you choose to workout during rush hour across town, this might end up costing you hours by the time all is said and done.
If you want to make the most of your time at the gym, avoid peak hours so that you won’t need to wait for the equipment you need. Lastly, choose a gym that is located close to home or to your workplace. That way you won’t waste time traveling to and from the gym.
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