So many people often ask, how many times or how long do I need to do this for before I see results? With any questions such as these, the answer very much depends on what results you are looking to achieve and on your body and training styles. Generally speaking, beginners will train less frequently than fitness fanatics, and people with more weight to lose will more than likely lose weight more quickly than those with more to lose. Other factors can also contribute to the answer, however, we will work towards a general guide for the average person.
When your body gets used to a routine, often weight loss and results can plateau. Therefore, you are best to find a class or workout which really challenges you offers variety. Workouts which change week upon week are great. Try to vary the intensity, distance, duration and repetitions of your workout, to ensure you are never just going back into your comfort zone. To achieve results, you want to be feeling the workout.
Introducing free weights into your weekly training is a great way to increase any weight loss plan. By using free weights, we are building muscle. Muscle helps to burn calories, therefore, in short, the more muscle you have, the more calories you burn, even when you're sitting still.
As general rule of thumb, three to five hours per week is the ideal amount of exercise you should be attempting each week. For beginners, this could simply be walking, jogging, yoga and weights throughout the week. You don't need to be attending hardcore strength training and HIIT classes to see results. Build up gradually, and enjoy the results along the way. Ensure you have rest days too, especially from weight training; it is vital to look after your body and eat, sleep and rest as you need to, as well as getting exercise. A rest day doesn't mean no exercise, you can do yoga after your strength training, followed by a day of cardio and repeat. This way, your muscles and joints are getting rested between workouts.
If I was to draw the perfect plan of a workout week, I would recommend 2 days of weight training, yoga at least once per week, and ideally 3 days of cardio workouts. If this doesn't work for you, find something that does and that you can stick to. To remain motivated, you need your plan to be achievable.