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6 Tips for Simplifying Your Exercise Routine

Man holding barbell with weight at the bottom of a front racked squat position
Making progress in exercise and being consistent doesn't have to be complicated. Stick to these six concepts to see success.

Exercise advice and recommendations can quickly become overwhelming whether you are new to exercising or have been exercising for a while.

Much like nutrition, it is easy to fall into the trap of believing you have to check all of the boxes to come up with the perfect program in order to see the results that you want.

Also like nutrition, that isn't true. A perfect meal plan doesn't exist and neither does a perfect exercise regimen. There are so many variations and humans aren't robots--there's not a "one-size-fit-all" program that works for everyone to see the same results.

Stick to these 6 concepts to keep your routine simple and consistent!

Graphic highlighting 6 concepts explained in the blog. In the lower right hand corner two women are lifting dumbbells together

  1. Movement patterns. There are 6 basic movement patterns. Look for similar movement patterns when substituting an exercise. For example, a kettlebell swing is the same movement pattern as a glute bridge. If the kettlebell swing isn't working out for you today (for whatever reason), you can always modify it to a glute bridge. Does the glute bridge seem to easy? Make it harder by adding weight, slowing down the tempo (increasing time under tension) or try a single leg variation.

  2. Progressive overload. It is important to continue to progress your workouts whether through increased intensity or increased duration. Progress doesn't always have to be adding more weight to the bar or lifting a heavier dumbbell. Are you able to add more reps? Slow down your exercise and remain controlled? Can you perform an exercise longer or finish a workout quicker? Tracking your workout progress with fitness benchmarking can be an effective way to see that you are (or are not) improving.

  3. Consistency. Becoming consistent with workouts will help keep you on track toward your goals. Without consistency, every workout feels like the first day. Constantly starting over isn't fun and does not motivate you to continue. Countless research studies have shown that participating in regular physical activity is one of the best the lifestyle choices you can make to live a happy and healthy life. Although it is tough to fit in the time to workout when you already have a millions things on your plate, it is definitely possible. I've helped some seriously busy professionals and parents implement a regular exercise routine with these simple, yet effective strategies.

  4. Deloading. A deload week is appropriate every 6-8 weeks and is important for the body to continue to gain strength or lose body fat. Deload weeks provide an opportunity for your body to recover fully from the accumulated fatigue caused by intense training. This recovery phase helps repair damaged tissues, reduce inflammation, and replenish energy stores, ensuring you're ready to smash your next training cycle. It can also be strategically planned into your programming so that you aren't feeling guilty for exercising less while on vacation or to account for a week where unplanned meetings kept you at work later.

  5. Take it with you. Utilize fun bodyweight workouts when traveling to get movement in when you might otherwise not! If you travel a lot for work (as compared to traveling less frequently for vacations), this is an important part of being consistent and not feeling like you are constantly starting over. Be proactive and figure out which workout you can do when traveling or how to get a great workout in when the hotel gym only has a few dumbbells and a treadmill. Bodyweight workouts are still difficult workouts when done correctly. Push-ups, pull-ups, planks and pistol squats are all bodyweight exercises that are not only difficult to do but have several variations that require no equipment at all.

By simplifying your exercise routine and knowing how to adapt, you can see the results you want through consistency in your habits instead of feeling like every week is the first day of your workout.

All content of this blog is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this blog.

Kelly Sherman, MS, NC, CGP, CPT Provision Nutrition & Wellness

Kelly Sherman, MS, NC, CGP, CPT, is a licensed nutritionist specializing in empowering women to reclaim their health by cutting through misinformation and ditching the diet culture. She has a master’s degree in nutrition and is degreed in exercise science as well as a certified personal trainer. With over 20 years of experience in the field, she combines the best of both nutrition and exercise sciences to best help her clients reach their potential. To nourish is to flourish!


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