There´s a tendency to overcomplicate things knowing that the more complicated the more sure we´re not going to follow it, we tend to think that if something is simple it won´t work but there´s a big gap between simple and easy, even when the concepts to lose fat and achieve any fitness goal are simple they´re not easy.
You don´t need to spend 2 hours in the gym everyday and you don´t need to do a lot of different exercises for each muscle group, this only make things more confusing and you waste a lot of time, you don´t need to do a lot of sets and reps unless you´re looking for an endurance workout.
Nowadays most guys like to train one muscle group per day the 5 day split that you see most guys in the gym following, if you´re not a bodybuilder you don´t need to do this, a lot of guys give more attention and prioritize isolation movements so they spend a lot of time in the gym getting that “pump”.
If you keep in mind our primary goal which is improve body composition, gaining muscle while keeping body fat low then resistance training is a priority it´s more important than cardio. You need to follow workout programs that focus on helping you gain lean muscle so you need to be training 3 to 4 days a week on this, the days left you can do some cardio.
We can divide resistance training exercises in three categories, bodyweight exercises, compound exercises and isolation exercises. Bodyweight and compound movements are the best option to gain muscle and get stronger, the way to gain dense muscle is by getting stronger on those exercises.
Workouts based on simple exercises like pushups, pull ups, squats, handstands, leg raises, bench press, over head press, bent over row, barbell squats and dead lifts are simple and effective, to this you can add some isolation exercises to target weaker muscles or work harder a muscle group you want to stand out. What you want with resistance training is to get stronger in the 5 to 8 rep range and 8 to 12 rep ranges to build dense muscle.
Once you have your resistance training in place you can add some cardio workouts just a tool to help you burn some extra calories that will help you get leaner faster or to maintain a low body fat, you´ll also get all the amazing benefits of endurance. You don´t want to do a lot of cardio or make it the base of your workouts because it´s not the way to gain muscle.
How you design your workouts depend of what you like to do, if you prefer bodyweight exercises you can make them the base of your workouts and add compound movements as a second option, if you prefer compound movements you can use them as your base and just use bodyweight exercises for some muscle groups, you can use them both for a more complete workout and to get stronger on both.
Once you have this on place you may want to add some isolation movements for muscle that need extra work like calves, shoulders, arms and abs, just one exercise for each is all you need, calf raises, lateral raises for shoulders, dips for triceps and chin ups or barbell curls for biceps is all you need.
This may seems so simple and basic but it´s the truth and it´s what works, I´m old school, I like to stick with the basics and simple tools which end being the more effective. If we want great results as fast as possible we need to focus and stick with what works, whit the tools that are going to give you the best results in the shortest period of time and that you can sustain for the rest of your life.
Traditional fitness programs are in most cases not the best option, they overcomplicate things, they make everything harder than it is, they don´t focus on health. The reality is simple, focus o getting stronger on bodyweight and compound movements, add some cardio to burn extra calories.
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