Should You Exercise Every Day?
May I start by making some assumptions about your life? It’s busy, I bet. You have a demanding job, perhaps even a side hustle or intense school course-load, a partner who is worthy of plenty of your attention, energetic kiddos who are always on the go, and (I hope!) some passion-projects and beloved hobbies. So WHY am I even suggesting you workout every day? How would you find the time?
Being fit and healthy improves every aspect of my life. I feel blessed to have had this realization early on in my journey, and I’ve leaned into my active routine during challenges and changes. However, for many people, fitness is the first to be pushed aside to make room for other priorities. This is understandable, given the struggle for motivation that can take place when it’s time to exercise. With so many other things on your plate, it’s easy to decide to do more pleasurable activities.
Maintaining your good health always needs to rank high, or you will be forced to spend time dealing with illness. And, hear me out, but making a commitment to move your body as a way of life on a daily basis will actually be less of a strain on your schedule.
There was a time when I would be in the gym for hours a day, possibly multiple times! I loved it, but as a full-time, single mother and successful entrepreneur running an online business from home, I simply don’t have that option anymore! I have been pleasantly surprised to maintain my physique (and even lose my pregnancy weight) with just 30-minute workouts, many in the comfort of my home (yay! - no driving time).
If you go all in and make an oath to yourself to exercise every day, completing dynamic routines and compound movements, then you will form a strong habit that will be tough to break. Your shorter workouts will be a given as part of your schedule, and you won’t have to psych yourself up for a crazy leg day or pre-schedule your rest days. Here are some examples of effective, compact full body workouts:
Gym Option, Workout #1 (Do 3-5 Sets of Each Exercise, 8 to 12 Repetitions):
- Barbell (BB) Squats, Superset (SS) with Pre-loaded BB Glute Hip Thrusts
- Machine Leg Curls, SS with Bench Hyperextensions
- Leg Extensions, SS Hanging Leg/Knee Raises
Home Option, Workout #1 (Do 3-5 Sets of Each Exercise, 15-20 Reps):
- Squats (weights if available), SS Romanian Deadlifts
- Bridge Toe Taps, SS Downward Facing Dog with Single Leg Raises
- Wall Sits, SS Mountain Climbers
Gym Option, Workout #2 (Do 3-5 Sets of Each Exercise, 8 to 12 Repetitions):
- Smith Machine Chest Press, SS Assisted Dips
- Seated Dumbbell (DB) Shoulder Press or BB Military Press, SS Cable Face Pulls & Burpees
- Machine Oblique Crunches/Torso Twists, SS Tricep Isolation Machine
Home Option, Workout #2 (Do 3-5 Sets of Each Exercise, 15-20 Reps):
- Push-Ups (Legs Elevated on Couch), SS Chair Dips - to fail
- Standing Single Arm DB or Band Shoulder Press with Squat, SS Reverse Flys with DB or Band
- Band Bicycle Crunches, SS Overhead DB Extensions or Single Arm Band Pressdowns
Gym Option, Workout #3 (Do 3-5 Sets of Each Exercise, 8 to 12 Repetitions):
- Wide Grip Lat Cable Pulldowns, SS Straight Arm Cable Pressdowns & Box Jumps
- Single Arm Standing Cable Row, SS BB Preacher Curls
- Assisted Chin-Ups, SS Ball Passbacks
Home Option, Workout #3 (Do 3-5 Sets of Each Exercise, 15-20 Reps):
- Standing Double Grasp DB Row, SS Single Arm Band Pressdown & Pop Squats
- Standing Single Arm DB or Band Row, SS Band Concentration Curls
- DB Pullovers, SS Deadbugs
Making the right decision to choose the more physically demanding option will help you burn more calories naturally, such as:
- riding your bike to work instead of driving
- taking the stairs vs the elevator
- visiting with a friend by going for a walk together in lieu of drinks
- listening to an audio book while you run rather than relaxing on the couch
When you flip the switch and choose to embrace activity as part of your lifestyle, finding time for exercise each day becomes simple!
About the Author
Coach Julie Germaine is an NFLA-certified fitness expert and prenatal trainer, and an NASM-certified nutrition specialist. She is also a fit mom to an active toddler and a 2x world-class fitness champion who has been featured in and contributed to numerous fitness, fashion, and lifestyle magazines and other media. She has loved helping men and women lose belly fat and maintain their incredible body transformations as a virtual coach since 2005.