JP Mullowney
JP Mullowney

Whether you are just beginning on your journey to better health and fitness or you are already well on your way, at some point you have likely wondered, “How many workouts per week do I need?”. A quick Google search will tell you that you need 150 minutes of moderate activity per week. This however will likely lead to more questions than actual clarity. Thankfully, by the end of this article you will be well equipped and able to determine how many workouts per week you need.

The Facts

  1. The number of workouts you need per week is based on your goals and your training experience.
  2. Research suggests that the minimum number of workouts per week which you should do to see results is two.
  3. With that in mind though, exercise and results share a dose response relationship! To see continued results, you must continually challenge yourself! This involves increasing the frequency (and intensity) of your training at certain training milestones (see point 1 below).

The Science

  1. In the most recent version of ”Essentials of Strength Training and Condition”, the NSCA recommends that to see continual results, beginner trainees (<2 Months) should train 1-2 times per week, intermediate trainees (2-6 months) should train 2-3 times per week while advanced trainees (>1 year) should train 3-4 times per week.
  2. In a study conducted by McLester et al. (2000), the authors found that 3 training sessions per week produced significantly greater increases in lean body mass (muscle) and strength than 1 training session per week.
  3. Another study by Kraemar and Ratamess (2004) suggests that 2-3 days per week are necessary to see improvement while 1-2 sessions per week are necessary to simply maintain existing training adaptations. The authors note though that when the object of training is continual improvement, 4 days is better than 3 which is superior to 2 which produces more improvement than 1.

The Take Home Message

Training frequency can be a confusing topic. There are many differing opinions and many different training programs which have proven successful.The single most important factor is that the training frequency fits you. Specifically, your training experience, goals, needs, and availability. If you are not sure if you training the appropriate number of times per week, or you feel that your results have begun to stagnate, please ask Jon, Danica, or myself for tips and suggestions on how you can continue to see improvement from your training routine.

If we have not had the pleasure of training you at JKC and you feel like you could use that extra push to be your best self, please see our Services Page for more information about joining the JKC Family.

Prepared for the JKC blog by Coach Thomas.

Photo credit: JP Mullowney

I had spent a fair bit of time in gyms in my teens and twenties but I turned away from the gym to focus on activities that I enjoyed more. What keeps me at JKC is that I do really enjoy it. I always feel that I’ve accomplished something when I leave at the end of my workout. The environment is really positive and focused on challenging yourself whatever your level of comfort and fitness. I’ve also seen results that I’m really happy with; having someone who really knows what they’re talking about to guide your workouts makes them way more effective and focused than just “going to the gym”.

Shortly after I started at JKC, I sustained a fairly major injury that took me off my feet for several months. When I started to get back to activity, it was very difficult. Jon and Thomas worked hard to tailor my workouts to my goals and what I could do. With their help, I’ve been steadily building back strength and function.

I’ve been weight training on and off for years but never really had a specific goal or target in mind so routinely stalled out, plateaued or stopped training all together. Before I joined JKC I was definitely in a fitness slump and needed something to motivate me and get me back on track. I did a bit of digging online, looking at various personal training options and gyms around town but JKC seemed like the best option by far. I’ve tried big box gyms and other personal trainers in the past but none of them have had the perfect combination of goal specific fitness programming, welcoming and supportive environment, and the knowledge and passion to back it all up that you’ll find at JKC. Jon and Thomas are great to work with, they know how to motivate you if you’re having an off day and are well versed in all the different ways to make your muscles burn! I also have noticed some major improvements in my deadlifts since I started with JKC and was really happy with the result.

I had been struggling with work-life balance resulting in not exercising or playing hockey as much as I had been doing in the past. In addition to being out of shape, I was starting to experience some back/shoulder issues and realized I needed to make some changes. Around this time, a friend (who was also a client) recommended JKC and that’s when I started!

You really feel part of a community where everyone is welcoming and supportive. You get a program that is designed specifically to achieve your goals, with the ongoing coaching, progress tracking and support required to achieve them. The JKC team are very knowledgeable about fitness and conditioning, and very engaging with everyone to answer questions or discuss anything and everything training related. I also like the flexible scheduling and gym times that work for my schedule (I like early mornings and evenings).

I started at JKC in January of 2014 and I’m 67 years old. When I had my Initial Assessment, I knew – almost immediately – that Jon knew what he was doing and what he was talking about. I was overweight, out of shape, and in serious need of someone, like Jon, who could get me back on a fitness/conditioning routine that suited me, my age, my less than acceptable physical condition, my sometimes intermittent RA, and my need for a structured, consistent and yet flexible training and conditioning program that would work for me.

Fundamentally, if I made a choice at all with respect to JKC – it was to continue to come back each week. I have not been in a lot of gyms. To be honest, they used to intimidate me. What makes JKC different is their approach to each and every one of their clients. Jon and Thomas – and now Craig – tailor each training regime to the particular needs of each client. That ensures that the training regime will suit each client upon the start of training and changes as the client improves. It adjusts for any physical setbacks such as injuries and it adjusts for success. It is just that simple.

It is also the consistent encouragement that comes from Jon, Thomas and Craig. That voice that comes to you while you are in the middle of a particularly difficult set – rear-foot elevated split squats comes to mind immediately – that says “good job” or “keep it up” or “just a couple more reps.” To know, in that moment, that you are not alone and the trainer is paying attention to what you are doing. That is priceless for me.

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