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Create Your Own Fitness Routine (Part Two): Selecting Your Exercises

Create Your Own Fitness Routine (Part Two): Selecting Your Exercises

Sal Farhan B.S. / ACSM E-CP

Sal is known for being the most creative trainer at our facility with regards to exercise selection.  Often times you walk into his training room and find bands hanging from...everywhere, and dumbbells and barbells on the floor.  It's only fitting his room is known as "Sal's Garage".


Creating Your Own Fitness Routine Part 2: Selecting the Right Exercises


Goal: Weight loss

Exercise Type: Body weight / Light Compound lifts

Shooting to hit full body during an exercise will elevate metabolism more than targeting one muscle group. Typically the more muscles being recruited the higher the heart rate which means more calories being burned. Body weight exercises like the pushup, pullup, squat, lunge are a great way to get many muscles firing to support the load/stress.  The same can be said for lighter compound bench press, barbell squat, deadlift, etc.



Goal: Weight gain / Muscle building

Exercise Type: Dumbbells / Barbells / Machines for Isolation

    To gain muscle / weight it’s common to increase the intensity. Think like a body-builder would. A lot of times using body weight will not provide enough weight. Heavy weights are needed. Isolation is another important factor. Just targeting one area of the body while attempting to rest the muscles are being used. Because the load is very heavy, having different body parts moving at the same time is more difficult and can easily lead to injury.  Focusing on each individual muscle group means doing a split routine.   In a split routine we commonly set certain days for certain muscle groups like Day 1(Chest/Shoulders/Triceps), Day 2 (Legs/Core), Day 3 (Back/Biceps/Posterior Core).  Some examples of exercises for Day 1 would be dumbbell chest press, barbell shoulder press(military press), and machine tricep pulldowns.  Day 2 might include exercises like barbell squats, dumbbell calf raises, and torso twist machine.  Day 3 might look like machine lat pulldowns, dumbbell curls, and weighted dumbbell back extensions.


Goal: General Conditioning and Maintenance

Exercise Type: Good mix of all

When trying to stabilize your fitness level and maintain, you always want to keep things fresh and introduce different movements at different angles using different hand/feet grips using different pieces of exercise equipment. How often you mix it up is entirely up to you. You can also keep the same routine, intensity, and frequency of the exercises the same and maintain your current strength and weight (assuming the diet and metabolism doesn’t change). I don’t recommend this because it will get stale and I feel that everybody should have a goal and then set another goal once they achieve a goal. This can prevent setbacks which many people go through after achieving their prior goal.  You are only as good as your last at bat!



If you missed Part One: here!

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