If you’re a complete newcomer to working out, it can be difficult to know where to start if you want to develop a personal training programme. It’s important not to overwhelm yourself with too much too soon, but at the same time, you need to make sure you’re challenging yourself from the get-go. The best thing to do is begin with effective but simple exercises, with enough variety so that you don’t get bored and give up.
The trick to successful personal training for a beginner is to build up your confidence and learn to believe in yourself while ensuring you have the right mindset for your fitness journey. With this in mind, here are some steps to follow to create your own workout programme.
1. Decide What You Want From Your Programme
Before you can create a personal training programme, you need to know what you want to achieve. What are your goals? How fit are you at the present time? Have you any gym experience? What kind of lifestyle do you have? The answers to these questions will help you determine where to begin.
2. Choose The Right Rep Range
Choosing the right rep range for you is a good starting point. While 8-12 reps is the usual starting point, that may be a little too much for you if you’re a complete novice. You may, instead, want to start with just 6-8 reps then work up from there.
Once you’ve chosen your rep range, you can determine your rest intervals and exercise variety. It’s a good idea to choose all-rounder exercises first then move onto auxiliary movements and specific targets later on. When it comes to rest intervals, you should start with a rest period between 60 and 90 seconds as a beginner.
3. The Warm Up
You need to plan in a warm up so your body is ready for working out and you won’t be injured. You should do at least 5-10 minutes of warming up to raise your heart rate and mobilise your muscles. Using a treadmill, bike, or StairMaster is a good choice, although if you’re a complete beginner, the bike is ideal as it’s user-friendly. Concentrate on mobilising your shoulders, wrists, hips, ankles, knees, and thoracic spine so you’re ready to exercise thoroughly.
4. Choose Your Exercises
When selecting the right exercises for you, you need to consider the three categories of exercise – primary, secondary, and tertiary.
Primary exercises will give you most gains from your workout, and you should choose no more than four of these for your workout to avoid getting overwhelmed. You should aim for these exercises to take up the majority of your workout time. Choose multi-joint exercises that are simple and at your level, with squats, lat pulls, lunges, and chest presses all being ideal additions to your programme.
While primary movements aren’t especially interesting, secondary exercises will keep you moving forward and offer more flexibility and fun for your workout. Single joint movements should be the focus here, but don’t try anything too intense since your energy level will be dipping when you get to this point.
Single leg squats, single leg bridges, single leg deadlifts, and tricep kickbacks are all ideal for this stage of your workout, but you should choose exercises that help you focus on areas you want to improve.
The tertiary exercises can either be fitted into your active rest in between sets or after the secondary exercises. You can include a short HIIT burst, mobility exercises, and core work here before you cool down.
5. Remember To Do Cardio
You absolutely must remember to add some cardio exercises into your programme. Initially, you should keep your cardio workouts at a low intensity to build up your confidence and stamina and then reassess yourself over time to see when it’s time to boost the intensity level up a notch.
Unless you’re working towards one specific goal like doing a marathon, it’s best to use several modalities so things stay fresh. Taking a hybrid training approach serves multiple goals from fat and weight loss to improvement of your fitness levels.
As a beginner, it’s a good idea to add two or three resistance training sessions into your programme with two cardio sessions thrown in on your non-training days. You’ll then be able to be active for five days but won’t be overdoing it, with the cardio activities forming an excellent recovery session in between your weight lifting sessions.
6. Reviewing And Tweaking Your Programme
It’s important that, once you’ve created your beginner’s workout programme, you don’t rest on your laurels. You have to constantly review your regime and ask yourself whether you should make any changes or adjustments. If one exercises that you’ve included doesn’t seem to be doing anything for you, you could switch it for another or take the level up a notch.
The best designed fitness plans are purpose built while also taking into account your preferences, so you need to consider the reasons for each exercise that you include and whether they’re all at the right level for your developing skill. It’s likely that you’ll need to add in more reps, sets, and possibly even different exercises over time so that you can continue to make progress and increase your strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular resilience.
Your workout programme should adapt and change with you, so when you’re no longer a beginner, you shouldn’t stick with a beginner’s training programme! Instead, you need to up your game and push yourself harder to achieve new and more challenging goals.
If you’re ready to start working out, developing your own beginner’s training programme is the first step in the process. However, you may find it easier to work with a personal trainer on this aspect of your exercise regime. A trainer will be able to help you determine the best goals for you, assess your capabilities, and plan the right exercises to ensure you achieve the goals that you have set for yourself.
Thousands of Home Personal Training Programs
Join us today and gain access to thousands of Home Workout Programs, along with weekly live training videos to help you achieve your fitness goals. No matter if you want to build muscle or lose weight, we have the resources to support you!