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The Short and Sweet Routine

The fastest way to keep your exercise routine regular.

If you’ve spent some time away from the gym, you may feel like taking on the world at your return. Sure, a three-hour marathon workout may make you feel like you conquered the world, but it takes regular exercise to get your body in good shape, so bite off a little at a time.
Need a little more convincing? Read on to get a few reasons why a short routine may be the best way to get and stay strong.

It’s Easier to Maintain

The thought of a prolonged workout may be intriguing at first, but getting to the gym the third and fourth time for an equally long workout won’t be easy. Nothing is as easy the second or third time – especially if it involves draining yourself of all energy with hours of nonstop exercise. Do yourself a favor by going for the short, the sweet, the manageable.

It Fits in Your Schedule

Along with a short routine being easier to maintain, it also fits into your schedule with greater ease. This means that while you may think you’ve not got time in your busy day to squeeze in a trip to the gym, you actually do. On those days when it seems impossible to hit the gym, it’s much easier to make it happen if your routine only requires 20 or 30 minutes, compared to some of the more time-intensive workouts.

It Gives You Variety

Short routines may seem stifling on your creativity. But if done right, they can provide a great amount of variety in your routine. Shoot for four exercises during each session and choose different ones every day. Go for two arm and two leg exercises one day, one arm, two legs, and an abdominal exercise the next. Keep things switched up by tossing in an all-aerobic day or a full body workout in the pool.

It Helps You Focus

One of the big problems of staying in the gym for too long is the ease with which you can lose your focus. You may have shown up with grand plans, but two hours into it, you realize you’ve been standing around shooting the bull more than you’ve been working out. By sticking to a short routine, you know exactly where you’re going from your first step into the weight room to the final lap in the pool, ensuring your body gets a workout throughout your time at the gym.

It Gives You a Partner

Finding yourself in the midst of a marathon weight-lifting session gets old fast for you and your workout partner. To make sure your spotter will always be there by your side to offer encouragement and join you on the road to better health, use a shorter routine. It’ll help you both stay on track.

Into the Long

Wonderful as a quick workout is, it’s not always the best choice. In fact, a longer routine may be called upon to help you meet your goals. So when is longer better?

Typically, a longer routine is best suited for body builders and people training for something that requires spectacular endurance. If you’re training for a triathlon, marathon, or other endurance sport, you should learn how to push your body as hard and as long as will be necessary to compete well during your chosen athletic event.

However, unless you’re a body builder, you probably shouldn’t spend all of your time in the gym. You would be better off maintaining a short routine under the barbell and pushing your limits outside of the gym, practicing specifically for your chosen sport. That means learning how to swim for a mile without stopping, running for 15 miles or more, and riding your bicycle so you’ll be ready when the gun is fired at the starting line.

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