HOW MANY TIMES A WEEK DO YOU HAVE TO TRAIN TO GET RESULTS?

When it comes to training frequency, we sometimes see and hear everything and its opposite. There are those for whom one training session per week is already enough and those who, addicted, cannot go a day without going to the gym… But concretely, what is the best pace, according to your level and your objectives to put on your sneakers?

strong sportwoman

1 TRAINING PER WEEK

Let’s say it’s already better than nothing but, honestly, there’s little chance of getting visible results, especially if you want to gain mass. That said, if you simply want to improve your health and this in parallel with a balanced diet, it is already a good start… Who knows? Who knows? Under the effect of endorphins, you may get a taste for it! So if you have the time or motivation to do only one training session a week, go ahead and do it!

2 TIMES A WEEK

It is from two training sessions per week that we really start to perceive the psychological benefits of physical exercise. It is also from this frequency that the results on our health, sleep quality and level of fatigue tend to be felt.

In addition, this frequency is well suited:

  • For beginners because it allows their body to adapt to physical exercise and to recover well. If we start off on the right foot, there is a good chance that we will exhaust ourselves and give up quickly.
  • For those who wish to talk. It is obvious that at the rate of two sessions per week when you are more experienced (and the body has become accustomed to effort), you cannot expect any real physical transformation. On the other hand, it is a good pace if you have achieved your objectives after training more regularly (3-4 times/week) and you want to give yourself a break and/or simply keep what you have learned. We can add a session in case of abuse (for example after the end of the year holidays…)

3 SESSIONS PER WEEK

Now it’s starting to get more serious! By training 3 times a week, we finally get to the phenomenon of overcompensation and we can start waiting for real physical results. The pounds should start to melt and the muscles should take shape! Ideally, we will follow one day on and one day off by varying the types of training so that the body does not get into a routine and we will leave the weekends to recover and/or engage in leisure activities, without any pressure.

4 TRAINING SESSIONS PER WEEK

Now we’re here! Here is the most often recommended rhythm for weight loss or weight gain because it is probably the one with which the most tangible results are obtained. The reason? A good balance between physical activity and recovery, which we must remember, is the phase during which muscles are built. Moreover, it is a good frequency to combine sporting activity and daily constraints and to keep the notion of leisure sport, essential not to lose one’s motivation.

We can organize ourselves as follows: Monday and Tuesday: training / Wednesday: break / Thursday and Friday: training / Saturday and Sunday: off: we recover and enjoy the good sensations of a body that is certainly sore but (more and more) in shape!

5 SESSIONS PER WEEK

This is no longer a joke! We’re coming into the pro camp! At this frequency, it is better to be comfortable with your body and the basic principles of training and sports nutrition so that you don’t work muscles until they have recovered well and avoid exhaustion and/or injury.

It is clearly a volume of training to discourage beginners who could get caught up in the game of excessive motivation and find themselves on their knees after a month. For the others, we will tend to distinguish two objectives:

  • If you are looking to lose weight: (And if you are physically and mentally able to cope with such a high level of training): Why not? Indeed, the more you exercise, the more calories you burn and the more likely you are to lose weight. Here, it is important to vary the training (we avoid full-body every day and alternate between strengthening and cardio) and to be really careful about what we eat and what we drink in order to avoid deficiencies and dehydration.
  • If you are looking to gain mass: clearly, this rhythm, when you train intensely, is not the most convincing because the muscles do not have time to recover well between two sessions. So unless you work in a split with a tailor-made program, have a flawless diet and can rest properly during the day, it’s not recommended.

So, 5 training sessions per week, if you want but especially if you feel it and your lifestyle allows it!

6 TRAINING SESSIONS PER WEEK

Here, we reach the red zone, the one of the most addicted! Generally, they know what they are doing and will find it difficult to break from their routine… At their own risk because overtraining is not far away. As far as weight gain is concerned, the results of this “no pain, no gain” are far from convincing because the muscles very clearly do not have time to recover to develop. And when it comes to weight loss – especially if you rely heavily on cardio, you may exhaust your adrenal glands with excessive cortisol production. Result: fatigue, tension, nervousness and even unexpected fat gain, especially in the abdominal area…

We can’t be all the time! Even top athletes (i.e.: who are massaged and followed by a nutritionist and do not have to deal with work and the physical and mental fatigue it causes) allow themselves two days of rest per week!

If you really want to train 6 days a week, prefer short sessions (no more than 30-45 minutes warm-up and recovery included) and do not hesitate to do small annual check-ups with the sports doctor and the osteo to make sure that everything is OK!

7 TIMES A WEEK

Does bigorexia mean anything to you? If you are at 7 sessions per week, you have certainly heard about it. Any sports coach will tell you, enough is enough! Learn to ease off a little and enjoy the joys of active recovery before you wear out your body. Anyway, be careful! Excess, even the most healthy ones, are never good for your health!

As you will have understood, the goal is to find a balance between training and recovery during the week. Everyone has to find their ideal pace because many parameters (age, height, weight, sex, level of practice, lifestyle…) come into play.

Sport at home: which device is right for you?

Are you no longer so motivated to go jogging or cycling? Equip yourself with a cardio-training device to keep up the pace! What are the questions to ask before choosing? What are the particularities of each device? Let us coach you on the subject…

treadmill

A practical solution

Cardio-training devices are the ideal solution to continue or complete a warm sports activity as soon as the days shorten and the temperatures decrease! They keep you in shape without worrying about the night, the cold, the rain, and avoid wasting time to get to the activity site. Sport is your home! You can make yourself comfortable, watch a movie, listen to music without having any alertness problems on the road, or even read a magazine!

The principle of cardio-training devices is to offer an endurance activity in order to burn calories, strengthen muscles, strengthen the cardiovascular system, and provide a feeling of well-being. Most of these devices have a small computer that, like a sports coach, will offer you programs adapted to your age, weight, heart rate and the intensity and duration of the exercises. In addition, some of them also allow you to consult your progress, which is always motivating!

The right questions before buying

Don’t give in to impulse buying! Many apartment bicycles and other rowers quickly ended their careers in the cellar because they were too cumbersome or too complicated. Before buying, ask yourself the right questions. What is your level? How much time do you want to spend on this activity per week? What is your budget? Do you have room at home? Remember that even if manufacturers compete in ingenuity to be able to fold the devices to make them housable, you will be more motivated for your rowing session if it is ready for use than if it is folded and stored in a cover under the bed! Also ask yourself about your objective: simply keep in shape, lose weight, complete sports training… Finally, contact a qualified salesperson who will be able to advise you taking into account all these parameters, as well as your morphology. If you have to buy second-hand to get reasonable prices, also choose the right brands: Nupstep, Bowflex, etc.

The exercise bike

To work : thighs, buttocks, calves.
The + : the exercise is easy and without risk of injury due to a bad position. The device is stable and therefore safe. The comfortable sitting position allows you to work for a long time and to easily vary the intensity. It is an ideal device for overweight people.
The – : riding a mountain bike is not recommended if you have knee problems.
Price : from 150 €.

Good to knowThink about the presence of programs. Take into account the inertia wheel: the heavier it is, the smoother the pedaling will be. Test the comfort of the saddle and handlebar, these are elements not to be neglected when you plan to spend several hours a week on the bike!

The elliptical bike

To work: thighs, buttocks, calves, biceps, triceps, chest, back. You pedal upright while operating movable bars with your arms. The movement is similar to that of cross-country skiing.
The advantages: while offering the same advantages as the exercise bike, the elliptical bike is more complete because it allows the muscles of the whole body to work. It is also heavier and therefore more stable. The joints are well preserved because the movements are fluid and shock-free.
The -: the elliptical bike may seem ideal, but be careful, the particular upper and lower body movement is not suitable for everyone. Try the device before you buy it!
Price: from 100 €.

Good to knowAs with the exercise bike, think about the programs, the inertia wheel and comfort!

The rower

To work: all the muscles of the body. It is recommended to do 3 to 4 sessions of 20 minutes minimum per week.
The advantages: the rower allows a complete muscular workout and it is not very cumbersome.
The -: this device is intended for people with a good sporting level because it requires a certain technicality to adopt a good position. Poor posture can lead to back and knee injuries. In addition, the work is more intense and therefore difficult to hold over the length. Finally, the rower is not the most comfortable device.
Price: from 150 €.

The treadmill

To work: thighs, buttocks, calves.
The pluses: the treadmill requires a simple and natural movement. It is possible to easily adjust the intensity by adjusting the speed and inclination. The mat absorbs shocks well compared to running outdoors. This device is suitable for everyone, even people with reduced mobility, and is ideal for those wishing to lose weight, in combination with a balanced diet.
The -: running on a carpet can quickly turn out to be monotonous. The price can also be a barrier, especially when you consider that this activity is totally free if it is practiced outdoors!
Price: from 500 €.

The stepper

To work: thighs, buttocks, calves.
The advantages: economic and space-saving.
The – : stepping into the stepper is a very stressful practice and is not recommended if you have knee problems.
Price: from 40 €.

Some rules to follow, inside and out!

  • Always warm up 10 minutes before exercising and stretch your muscles after exercise, also for about 10 minutes.
  • Drink small sips of water regularly during exercise.
  • Try not to smoke an hour before and two hours after exercise.
  • Do not exercise if you have a fever or within eight days of a flu-like condition.
  • If you wish to resume a sporting activity after 35 years for men and 45 years for women, consult your doctor.