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How many times a week do I want to exercise?

TimelesStyle

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What is the optimal number (if any) of times to exercise per week? I'm thin and reasonably fit looking (not shredded by any means, but no fat hanging off either) and my goal is to stay that way. I don't want any more/less size or weight, but if I got a bit more cut that would be fine.

I don't really enjoy the gym, so I never go for more than 40min at a time, so it'll be either strength or cardio. Strength training is usually a combination of body weight exercises, light dumbbell exercises and cable machine exercises. I'll do three sets each of about six of them. Cardio is typically a brisk walk on the treadmill near maximum incline.

I used to always make sure to do six days a week, but when I got lazy for a few weeks I noticed I actually looked a bit better only going 4-5 days per week. Is that a better target to aim for, or was it perhaps due to something else (was eating less those weeks for an unrelated reason, perhaps)?
 

jarude

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you can do way better than that by doing meaningful weight training 3x a week
 

TimelesStyle

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Originally Posted by jarude
you can do way better than that by doing meaningful weight training 3x a week

Don't have much of a gym, nor do I enjoy heavy weight training, and with a history of heart problems in my family, cardio is important, so don't really think the above is going to help me at all, it's basically the exact opposite of the direction I'm going.
 

Gradstudent78

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Originally Posted by TimelesStyle
I'm thin and reasonably fit looking (not shredded by any means, but no fat hanging off either) and my goal is to stay that way.

Is your current workout meeting this goal?
 

jarude

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Originally Posted by TimelesStyle
Don't have much of a gym, nor do I enjoy heavy weight training, and with a history of heart problems in my family, cardio is important, so don't really think the above is going to help me at all, it's basically the exact opposite of the direction I'm going.

what equipment do you have available to you? lifting can and improve your cardiovascular conditioning. if you're going to take the time to lift weights, you may as well do the most effective exercises.

you can still focus your exercise on cardio, which you can do out of the gym if you want to. if i was going to focus on cardio, I would do a few big compound lifts and HIIT (sprints on an elliptical or stairmaster) immediately following that 3x a week, and low-intensity cardio (long walks) on the in-between days.
 

globetrotter

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I'd say that you can aim at 3 very different plans - 3 times a week for 30-45 minutes. once a week for a good serious strength session, again not longer than an hour, but intense, or 15-20 minutes a day, 6 times a week, with something like a kettle bell. each will give you something very different, but will keep you strong, and healthy. none will make you look amazing, without some added work and diet.
 

TimelesStyle

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Originally Posted by Gradstudent78
Is your current workout meeting this goal?

It is, the current mix, along with eating healthy, has left me better looking than at any previous time in life. I'm just wondering if playing around with number of days a week I exercise, or the way in which I order my workouts will enhance the results in any way (adding more rest, changing the strength cardio mix). As I said, I don't use particularly heavy weights, but tend to use a mix of the following exercises, listed in no particular order, making a full body work-out each time with no exercises the same as the previous workout:

Neutral grip pull-ups
Military push-ups
Incline push-ups
Decline push-ups
Chin-ups
Leg press
Goblet squat and press
Step-ups w/weights on bench
Cable pull-downs
Cable rows
Back extensions
Planks
Leg raises
Leg curls
Medicine ball twists
Weighted back lunges
Calf raises
Pike push-ups (think that's what the ones for your back/shoulders are called)

There's nothing particularly high-impact, only the rows/pull-downs/leg presses use >50lbs so recovery is quick. That makes it possible to do them every other day, but perhaps more recovery is needed each week? No interest in changing the workouts themselves, just wondering what if anything I could get out of changing the schedule.
 

Gradstudent78

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Considering your goals and the type of workout you have it probably doesn't matter. I would definitely stick with doing what you like and what you'll consistently do. For general health that's better then what most people are doing.

If you wanted some kind of optimal muscle growth, strength , or fat loss and were really driven to accomplish those goals it would be different.

If it was me I'd probably reduce the days down to 4 or 5 and find something else active (swimming, climbing, some kind of boxing/martial arts class) to do on the 5th or 6th day.

Kettlebells would probably work in nicely with the way you like to workout, particularly kettlebell swings.

You could also add things like lunges, inverted rows, or romanian deadlifts.
 

Geoffrey Firmin

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I try to do 3-4 sessions a week on a cross country trainer lasting between 45 min to 1 hour. I have read somewhere that doing 30min then rest 30min then 30min is better for fat burning, any one know anything about this?

And then I try and do either 1-2 out walking a circuit which takes an hour.

Overall I would average 5 sessions a week and do about another 15 at the end with a couple of weights.
 

Carlton45

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hi guys,,,
It depends a lot on your physique.If you want to burn fats it is essential for you to make a routine of at least two hours per day.If your purpose is just to keep yourself fit and health i think that an hour session per day is more than enough.
 

Lighthouse

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I haven't been to the gym for a week because I had a cold. I think the cold is gone as of yesterday, but I don't want to rush back to the gym because I don't want the cold to return like Michael Myers. Is this wise, or am I being lazy?
 

GZamani

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If you just walk for more than 10 minutes everyday and watch what you eat, you should be fine.
 

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