Alright, here’s the deal. We all know that some sort of physical activity does wonder for one’s body. Not just the physical aspects but it makes sure you’re fit mentally as well.
But too much of a good thing can be bad and it’s no different when it comes to workout. You cannot workout 7 days a week for ungodly hours and expect great results. Infact, too frequent workouts can affect you negatively. A perfect workout plan is a balance between intensity and frequency. Here are a few things to consider when it comes to workout frequency.
1. Does it affect your body if you don’t train your body regularly?
Generally, people think that they need to train their bodies every single day in a week. Physical activities like walking or swimming or some low-intensity workouts can be done regularly throughout the week because it’s a part of our lifestyle. However, your body will take a long time to recover if you do high-intensity workouts daily and it may also have some negative effects on your body too. High-intensity workouts like weight training can be done 4-5 days a week which makes it easier for your body to recover in the next few days. It is enough to train your body 3-5 days a week which won’t affect the lifestyle of a regular person too.
2. How many days should we train each muscle/body part and what benefits do we get from it?
Back in the days, people used to train each body part once a week like Sundays were chest days and Mondays were back days and so on. But scientifically, it is not beneficial to train your muscles only once a week because for a muscle to recover, 48-72 hours is all that’s needed. So, you can train the same muscle after 2-3 days again. Training the muscle only once a week is like losing opportunity for growth. You don’t need a week to get fully recovered after a high-intensity workout. Instead, you can train your body more frequently by decreasing the total number of sets and increasing the intensity in each workout.
3. What if people don’t have time to train their muscles twice a week?
We don’t train the same muscle twice a week with high volume. We just divide them into two or three workouts. You can do fewer exercises with high intensity. Rather than doing 18 sets for chest on a Sunday, you can train chest on Sunday and Wednesday with 9 sets each. And since we’re only doing 9 sets on a day, we can add in another body part to train as well. This way, you can train multiple body parts in a single day, meaning more off days.
4. What’s the difference in training 3 days a week and 6 days a week?
It all comes down to the time you have for workouts. If you can manage 6 days a week, most likely an hour of workout per day is enough. However, if you only have 3 days to workout but you can workout for more hours on each of those days, you can get the work done by putting in 2 hour sessions on each of those 3 days. At the end of the day, your lifestyle determines which training schedule suits you the best.
5. How effective is it to train your weak/lagging body part every day?
It may not be much effective to train an individual body part every single day. But it is fine to train your single body part 3 times a week distributing the volume into 3 parts. The phrase “More is better” is not necessarily true. Moreover, if you train your weak body part every single day with high intensity it may not get enough time for recovery and hence never make progress. Remember, a muscle grows when you give it time to recover.
So, it's better to train upto 3 days a week but with higher intensity in each of those workouts.