Fitness training rules

Guidance for your exercise training plan

Before starting a training plan, you need to be aware of a number of exercise rules to ensure you are on the right path to fitness success. From getting enough rest through to developing a fitness routine, here's the guide to following the key rules of exercise planning.

Rest from exercise

It may seem strange to start this list with rest, but if you don’t get this element of your training right then you will not make any progress. Whilst you don’t want the whole of your program to consist of rest, it’s essential to listen to your body and take time off regularly.

Train according to how you feel

If you’re having a bad day and feel that another training session would be detrimental then don’t go. Training when you’re feeling unwell or having a stressful time at work for example, is counterproductive. This is not to be confused with that ‘I can’t be bothered, because I feel tired’ feeling.

Have an exercise plan

Training without a plan can be demoralizing. If you have a target in mind then you need to follow a plan or you could find you are literally going around in circles. A plan will give you short, medium and long term targets that you can tick off as you achieve them.

Stick to your exercise plan

Once you have devised your plan or have decided to follow one of ours then stick to it. Don’t be tempted to deviate from it just because you’re having a particularly good day. The plan will have been put together with all of the principles of training in mind, such as the need for progression.

Build up your exercise slowly

Don’t be tempted to do too much too soon. Even though you might feel that you just want to get into your training in a big way from day one, make sure that you stick to your plan and start slowly. If you don’t then you are very likely to get injured.

Get into a fitness routine

Build it into your way of life, just like you go to work and have dinner when you get back. What we don’t mean is do the same distance session all the time. If you do that then you won’t make any progress.

Go your own way when exercising

Training with a partner suits some people more than others. There are advantages but there are plenty of disadvantages. You may well find it better to do your own thing, especially in the early days. One of the problems of training with others is that you lose heart if you can’t keep up or don’t make as much progress as they do. Remember the principle of ‘individualisation’.

Don’t waver from exercise

Believe in yourself and don’t give up. There will be plenty of times when you doubt your ability to follow your plan and achieve your goals. Don’t lose sight of your goal and keep at it. We all have bad days but don’t let them affect your overall program.

Anything letting you down during exercise?

If your aware there is something letting you down then work on it. Don’t let a weakness bring down your training. Deal with it as soon as you identify it.

Getting an exercise plan ...

If you want to get fit, you really need to follow some kind of structured training program. If you are not bothered by a specific level of fitness, but want to be healthy, you do not need a structured training program, you just need to build fitness into your life.

If you would like to get fit, the best thing to do is set yourself some kind of goal. It may be to run a 5k or 10k race, to be able to swim a mile in the swimming pool or to lose a couple of inches around your waist.

As well as having a goal, we find that one of the best ways to stay motivated is to have a structured training plan. Such programs often take place in specialized facilities such as fitness centres or gyms and may be supervised by an instructor.

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