What’s Wrong with Your Workout?
What do you suspect is wrong with your workout? I’m talking the numero uno problem when it comes to most adults and exercise routines. Any guesses?
In thinking about why most U.S. adults do not succeed with their exercise program, I asked participants in my fitness classes for their input. (If you are from another country don’t think you are off the hook. Most English speaking countries are rife with inactivity and sedentary behavior. You are getting U.S. statistics, but the workout problem is worldwide.) The irony is that by definition, people in fitness classes are least likely to be the ones falling into the category of “problematic” or “wrong workouts.” Nevertheless they have the experience and interest to have insightful answers.
Good Guesses on What Can Go Wrong with Workouts
- “Not enough variety,” said one of my active 66 year olds. “If people do the same thing all the time, their workout results will suffer.”
- “Workouts can be wrong if they are not intense enough or too intense,” replied a front row 58 year old with a long history of exercise.
- “The program is not right for that person’s goals, body, or capabilities,” piped up my feisty and fit 80 year old.
All of those answers are correct insofar as they address common problems with exercise programs. But they have yet to hit on the MAIN problem with most workouts. My class respondents all assume one thing — that people are actually exercising in the first place.What's wrong w/your workout? And 80% of the US adult population's workouts? Click To Tweet
The Wrong Workout is the One Not Done
Yup – what’s wrong with most workouts is that people aren’t doing actually doing them. Do you have this same problem? And by “you” I mean your friends, relatives, and compatriots. Not you, of course.
150 Minutes to Be “Right”
Sure enough, the not done workout is all wrong. The most “right” workout in the world is bupkus nada zippity doo dah if you aren’t actually working it. Only 20% of US adults meet the minimum guidelines for exercise. Governmental guidelines recommend 150 minutes of moderately intense cardio activity per week, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise, or a combination of the two. For strength, adults should also engage in muscle-strengthening activities like resistance training at least twice per week. You can knock out such muscle training in 30 minutes per session if you have a well-designed program or attend a group strength training class. At most, you need to spend two more hours per week for a whopping total of under five hours spread over seven days to get both aerobic and strength benefits.Only 20% of US adults meet the minimum guidelines for exercise. Join that elite and Move More Click To Tweet
Think about the above statistics for a mighty-minute — almost 80% of US adults do not devote even two and a half hours in a week to aerobic movement. Walking counts, so that makes these inactivity numbers even more staggering. Even fewer adults spend two hours a week strength training. Enter the elite 20% and be a stats changer!
The Right Workout is the One You Will Actually Do
As we enter a new year, let’s focus on doing the right workout. And what is that?
One answer is to check out these posts that offer BEST workouts for specific needs.
- Go here to find out the Best Cardio Workout
- What if you want the Best Morning Workout? Then click that link.
- Still motivated to go from wrong to right? Take a peek at the Best Workouts for Burning Fat if you are a woman over 50.
- Lastly, go to 7 Age-Relevant principles of workouts for women over 50.
An even more accessible answer is that unless you are competing, performing, or striving for total peak fitness — in which case you need specific protocols — the right workout is the one you will actually do; the exercises you enjoy; the movement you will adhere to. Let this year be the one you add movement to. A little bit of imperfect sumpin’ sumpin’ is better than perfect nuttin’ nuttin’. Forget perfection. Go for progress. A little more than the day before. Let’s do this!
Action: Subscribe to our site and get your workouts right! Enter your email in any of the box options and we’ll come to you once or twice a week. Pinky promise.
Kymberly Williams-Evans, MA