Ever since I competed in my first competition, people who have seen my transition from 140 lbs to 114 lbs (show day weight) asked for advice in regards to meeting their own fitness goals. First, let me say that I am not a certified personal trainer. However, I am going to give you tips based on my own minimal (lol) experience.
Every body is different. Some may be trying to lose weight while others are trying to build muscle. No matter your goal, write it down. Writing your goals down is the first step to success. Be aware of what you are going to accomplish. To add, know your schedule. Can you devote to an hour workout or only thirty minutes? How many times a week can you dedicate to working out? This is very important information when figuring out your workout routine.
Once you have answered those questions, make sure you are aware of having proper expectations. As I said previously, every body is different. When I started my fitness journey and really got focused on my diet, I felt I should have lost 10 lbs very quickly. My body disagreed. It wasn't use to the caloric intake deficit in addition to the intense strength and cardio training. Basically, my body went into a "shock" state. However, once it figured out that everything was ok, my weight began to drop rather quickly. Your body will adjust; just keep pushing!
Let's get to the workout itself. Your workout routine should work the following areas:
- Chest, shoulders, and triceps.
- Back and biceps.
- Core (abdominal muscles and lower back).
- Butt and hamstrings.
I love utilizing compound exercises. Compound exercises are exercises that work multiple muscle groups at the same time. Doing this allows me to do less exercises in my routine, but still work out all the necessary areas.
Here is a list of my favorite workouts for each area:
- Chest, shoulders, and triceps:
- Bench press and dips
- Back and biceps:
- Rows and pull ups (we have a love/hate relationship lol)
- Planks, leg raises and exercise ball crunches.
- Squats and box jumps.
- Butt and hamstrings:
- Everything Deadlifts!!
The basis of the routine I am recommending is to just pick any exercise that works out the areas above and try to do that at least three times a week. Let's not complicate things. Dr. Google can be your friend if you don't have any idea which exercises works out which muscles. This is how I got started before I decided to get an experienced trainer (Paula Valdez) to help me align with my figure competition goals. That's it.
All you need to do is start. It's your choice. You can choose to start at home, in a gym, or outside by the beach! Just start. So... are you ready to begin?