So what is the best way to develop your exercise programs?
Here are the basics of planning your exercise programs:
Step 1 – First you do a self-evaluation to determine the intensity of your leg workout routine. To do this you must determine your current state of Aerobic Heart Health by finding your current Resting Heart Rate and then what your exercise Target Heart Rate should be.
To calculate these rates click here and I’ll show you how. When you are finished with your self-evaluation choose from these levels:
Beginner: You are a beginner if your legs are overweight, it’s been a while since you have exercised and you want to create shape to your legs. Your Target Heart Rate should be at a Level 1 exercise program based on my Target Heart Rate Chart.
Intermediate: You fall in the intermediate level if you are already working out but you want to define the shape of your legs more and make them stronger. Your Target Heart Rate should be at a Level 2-3 based on my Target Heart Rate Chart.
Advanced: In this level you are already working out, doing both aerobic exercising and strength training, but you want to build up your muscles more and change the shape and add more strength to your legs. Your Target Heart Rate should be at a Fitness Level 3-5 based on my Target Heart Rate Chart.
Step 2 – Your next step to developing your exercise plan is to determine the type of leg exercises you will be doing.
Beginners I strongly recommend aerobic exercising to lose the fat in your legs. The number of days and the length of your leg workout will depend on how healthy and how overweight you are. However, the more fat you have to lose the more days you will want to workout. There are several methods for getting your aerobic exercising. Click here to find out how.
Intermediate I think you should continue to do at least 3 days of aerobic exercising but in this level you are going to add strength training. If you are healthy enough, you can go ahead with light weights, but you can do the exercises without weights and still get results. I recommend 3 days of aerobic exercising and at least 2-3 days of strength training. There are several ways to get strength training. Click here to find what I recommend.
Advanced In this level you are working out a lot. You will be doing 3-5 days of strength training, with heavier weights, doing about 12-15 repetitions for 3 sets. You want to also do at least 2 days of moderate aerobic exercising. Click here for some suggestions.
Step 3 – So, you have determined the level you should be working at, you have an idea of what exercise routine you will be doing , now it’s time to set your goals and take the exercises from Step 2 and chart your leg workout routine – you could call this an exercise log. This is a very important step in the overall planning of your exercise program. It helps you stick with your goals.
Setting goals involves taking measurements of your legs. Be sure to write them down. I also took a picture of my legs and marked the picture to show what areas I wanted to improve on and how. I go into greater detail in Goal Setting. Be sure you chart your Days/Weeks, weight used, Reps/Sets, etc of your leg workout routine because it helps you stick to your plan.
If you are in your 50’s, or older, and are not extremely active, but otherwise in good health, I suggest that you start off in Beginner Level, but plan to move into Intermediate Level as quickly as possible. Remember, the older you are, the longer it takes for the weight to come off and to strengthen the leg muscles. Be patient and workout on a consistent basis.
Strength training is very important as you get older because you tend to lose muscle with age. If you want sample exercise routines based on your intensity levels, visit my Leg Workout Guide. This will help get you started.
Let me know how you are doing. Let’s go get those great legs in shape!