Did you know that there is a such thing as too much resistance training? It’s true. It’s tempting to think that the more you do, the faster and larger your muscles will grow but that’s not the case. Here’s the thing. When you lift weights, you put stress on your body, especially when you lift for strength. When your body is stressed, it has a hard time growing and thriving because it’s doing all it can to mitigate the stress. If you are a busy working parent, or if you have a demanding job on your feet all day, you’re already putting a ton of stress on your body. Adding to it could actually sabotage not only your gains but also your diet.
When we are stressed, we tend to make poor food choices. We don’t sleep as well either, which also can lead to overeating. It’s a vicious cycle! So, what should you do? Find the right balance for your body and your situation. You want to do the least amount to illicit the greatest gain. For most people which general health and fitness goals, that’s two to three days of weight training a week, usually full body style, with two to three days of moderate cardio. Prioritize protein and whole foods, and get at least 7 hours of sleep each night. This should be a good baseline for you to start with. If you find you are very tired, sore, or hungry all the time, adjust as needed.
Here’s an example of my training/nutrition protocol for inspiration:
Monday – full body training
Tuesday – 15 minute band circuit and 20 minute Peloton low-impact ride
Wednesday – full body training
Thursday – 15 minute band circuit and 15 minute Peloton HIIT ride
Friday – full body training
Saturday – 30-minute Peloton low-impact ride
Sunday – REST
I sleep 7 to 7 1/2 hours a night, going to bed at 9:30 or 10 p.m. and waking up at 5 a.m. to workout. I try to do a mile walk at least once a day, twice if I’m really lucky!
As far as food, I eat one gram of protein per pound of body weight so around 100g a day. I prioritize healthy carbs and fats and try to have a fruit or vegetable with every meal. I drink 48 ounces of water a day.
For me, this is working but I’m working on adding meditation. I need to further decrease the stress of working and remembering all the things for my family! No one is perfect and everyone is a work in progress!