Aaron Savvy, ACSM Certified Trainer
Can you give me some directions as to what muscle groups I should be working first? —Stanford, Los Angeles
I like to hit my biggest muscle groups first, whether it’s legs, chest or back. I would also suggest doing your cardio at the end of your workout. The reason for this and why you want to target your biggest muscle group first is because of your glucose levels. If you exerted and used up a good portion of your glucose (energy levels) first, your weight-lifting would suffer. As you hit your biggest muscle groups first, you’ll be able to sustain and lift to your true potential. As your workout continues, you’ll deplete in strength and your glucose levels will continue to drop. If you’re going to be doing combinations, I suggest in order—legs and shoulders, chest then biceps and finally back followed by triceps. You can then perform any abdominal exercises you choose and then cardio. What you are doing is working from the biggest muscle groups to the smallest muscle groups.
I always seem to fail at my New Year’s resolution when it comes to sustaining a regular workout routine. Any suggestions? —Ryan, Long Beach
I am sure you are not the only one that feels the despair of falling through on their workout resolution. I suggest creating a plan on how many and what days you are going to workout on. Also, the times you are going to go to the gym. It is also a good idea to know what muscle groups you are going to workout instead of just showing up not knowing what your workout is going to consist of. I would also look at your eating regimen. What does your diet consist of? Are you eating lean meats, fruits, grains, vegetables, drinking two to three liters of water a day? When you write out a plan, you are then able to see it, visualize it and finally follow through on it. If you are going into this blindly, then yes, the chances of giving up on your workouts will greatly increase.
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