“Jeidi, I can only come 3 (or 4 or 5) days a week. What classes should I take?”
“Should I do more cardio?”
“Do I need to lift more?”
These questions are LAYERED which means there can be no cookie cutter answer. However, I’m afraid folks are asking this question because they think if they don’t do something by the book then it’s going to be a total waste of time.
That would be a shame and I actually think it’s a giant obstacle for folks who want to get started, but haven’t pulled the trigger yet.
So I want to take you through 5 follow up questions I ask to get people to answer the questions above ON THEIR OWN.
At the end of this blog post, you’ll have a much clearer picture of what classes you should take or what your workout plan should look like.
1. “What do you even LIKE to do?” (super sneaky way of targeting CONSISTENCY!)
It seems like such a simple question, but one thing that fitness information overload has caused, is ANALYSIS PARALYSIS.
Cardio is good.
Cardio is bad.
Steady pace cardio is the devil.
HIIT cardio is dangerous.
Metabolic Conditioning is for athletes only.
Men should lift like this.
Women should lift like that.
Follow a body split format. Never do full body workouts.
Always do full body workouts. Body splits suck.
Make sure you functional train. Functional training is the best.
The protocols are endless! They’re CONTRADICTING. It’s a CONFUSING fitness world.
And honestly, people just wanna do “the right thing.” So they read a thing and “aha, THAT’S the way.”
When in reality…
INFORMATION does NOT create results!
KNOWLEDGE does not translate into ACTION!!!!!
Unless your ass is trying to compete on an elite level, YOUR #1 PRIORITY should be WHAT DO I ENJOY? WHAT DO I EVEN LIKE TO DO?
You are most likely to REPEAT the things you friggin’ ENJOY. And when it comes to exercise, CONSISTENCY is king of results.
Nothing works unless you are able to REPEAT it and if you HATE it, you’ll never do it!!!
… okay… maybe for 2 weeks because your motivation will be on a super mega high, but once the “exercise honeymoon” is gone you’re hitting snooze and sleeping in or “something gonna come up” and you can’t seem make it anymore.
Step one… period and point blank… NON-NEGOTIABLE… is to #loveyourworkout!!!!!!!!!
Without this… ANYTHING and EVERYTHING you do, no matter how fancy, or how many supplements you buy to enhance it… WILL. NOT. WORK.
2. Intensity- This is one of the major reasons people don’t just come to sweatlocal but STAY at sweatlocal!
Intensity… it’s what we’re known for and maybe why you’re a bit afraid of us too.
Yes… the rumors are true… day 1 is hardAF, but so is day 75 or 100 or 325. #sorrynotsorry
You WILL workout harder here than on your own b/c of the energy inside, the expert coaching, and the fact that all the guess work of what to do, when to do it, and how to do it is GONE!
All your energy goes exactly where it should… the workout.
With that said, if you’re unable to come to classes, you will need to tap into intensity in some way on your own!
Reps, time under tension, speed work, hill work, pyramids, ladders… explore the options!
ONCE YOU ARE CONSISTENT AND ARE ABLE TO PERFORM WITH INTENSITY… now… and only now do the details begin to even matter. Let’s address strength, cardio, and recovery.
3. Strength- “How many days per week can you come to lift?”
Let’s say you came to me LOVING cardio and so you’ve been crushing your Punch, Drenched, Hybrid, and TRX Sweat workouts for a few months. You’ve plateaued and you’re wondering… what’s next?
Well, now I’m going to get more precise with you.
You’re asking for a new OUTPUT from your body so you’ve got to enter a new INPUT… RESISTANCE TRAINING.
When folks come to sweatlocal they want the VISIBLE density (tone) and the muscle striations (cuts) that say I WORK OUT, I’M STRONG, and my muscle are SexyAF. **(Please don’t be ashamed of loving to workout b/c you want a tight booty and shoulders that pop!!!)
Muscle also means a faster metabolism so if you’re a cardio junkie, #doyouevenlift????? I’m not here to take away your beloved activity btw. Cardio your little heart out but…
- maybe let’s tweak your schedule a bit, see how often, if any, are you coming to Vain (lifting) or even MetCon5, both of which can get heavier than Punch or Drenched.
- Are you body split training your arms, your legs, or whatever you consider “your trouble area?” (not for fat loss cause spot fat loss is not a real thing but it is for muscle stimulation and blood flow to the area! Sometimes our trouble spots have poor blood circulation and that can make them trouble areas!
- Should we ADD a day of strength day to your workout plan or REPLACE a cardio day w/ a lifting day?
- How many strength days can your schedule/body handle?
Remember, WE CANNOT LOSE CONSISTENCY OR INTENSITY as we bring in strength!!!!
We are asking for a specific hormonal response from the muscles which still needs step 1 and 2 in order to get accomplished!!!
The answers to the questions above HAVE AN INDIVIDUALIZED response b/c your schedule, how you fuel, and what your interests are MATTERS! There is no cookie cutter answer.
4. Cardio- “Where’s your happy with cardio?”
As a general rule, what I see most often is people abusing cardio.
No. Cardio is NOT inherently bad for you, however, there is a point of DIMINISHING returns.
Cardio is not a “more is more fat loss strategy.” At sweatlocal, we focus on FAT LOSS and LEAN PHYSIQUES so we do not look to program for long distance endurance.
Since long duration cardio can eat away at your muscle and can make appetite less predictable, we stay away from it.
That’s not a statement that YOU SHOULD NOT train for your interests, btw!!!!!!
However, it is absolutely a statement that the way we program our cardio has a SPECIFIC function and so we execute in a particular way.
If cardio sends you into binge eating, then I have to help you explore how to recover from it better and/or how to reduce it so that it isn’t impeding the goals you have.
Endurance and fat loss goals are accomplished DIFFERENTLY!!!!
5. Recovery- “Are you resting? Like REALLY resting?”
It’s a MUST!!! You need at least 1-2 days per week where you are not asking your body to do anything strenuous.
If you look at sweatlocal’s schedule (post summer), you’ll see Power Yoga … yup only one choice.
(And yes… I am 100% aware that Power Yoga is not completely a recovery class.)
Let me clear, I would love to offer more recovery style classes … but as a general rule our sweatlocal fam has a hard time coming into the studio for recovery style classes.
Remember what I said about CONSISTENCY???? YOU HAVE TO LIKE IT… in order to repeat it.
Recovery is a classic example of this… Our sweatlocal folks KNOW it’s good for them, but they don’t really ENJOY this type of work.
It’s taken me YEARS just to get Power Yoga to STICK on our schedule.
With that said… recovery is vital and I do promote it at sweatlocal even if it’s not with an array of classes.
Your regimen should absolutely include rest and I have seen the INCLUSION of purposeful rest provide the RESULTS people are looking for in terms of a lean and strong body.
YES… People can and DO lose fat by RESTING especially when coupled with the right eating plan.
If you cannot come to class, I would expect leisure walks, sleeping in, epsom salts baths, or massages to become a more regular part of your regimen.
So…Love your workout, do it with intensity, add strength, add cardio that doesn’t derail you, and, for the love, REST.