With so many different types of workout programs, and a multitude of apps and online videos touting the perfect workout plan for women, it can be confusing to know where to begin. How do you find the best workout routine for you?
Read on as we explore different workouts and their potential benefits, plus a few ways to incorporate a workout plan into your busy schedule.
Why Should Women Work Out?
Exercise may offer many benefits that go beyond weight management. When women work out, it supports a healthy heart, maintains the circulatory system, and supports healthy metabolic function and weight loss efforts. Exercise can also maintain healthy bones, joints, and muscles.
Working out may also play a huge role in your mental health. Incorporating an exercise plan into your routine can boost your mood, support your feelings of overall well-being, and improve your feelings of energy.
While you may or may not see huge changes on the scale, exercise may help you build more muscle mass and lower body fat. Did you know your body can burn more calories when you have muscle mass? That fat-burning occurs even when you’re at rest.
Of course, you should speak with your healthcare provider if you have any medical conditions or concerns before you begin any fitness program.
What Should a Good Women’s Workout Routine Include?
The best kind of workout routine should include something you find interesting or can get excited about. What kinds of activities appeal to you? There are specific kinds of exercise, like cardio and strength training, to consider.
A good workout routine will blend your favorite activities and interests with these types of exercises. Here’s a great blend of exercise and thoughtfulness from Kroma founder and wellness pioneer Lisa Odenweller, “My favorite type of workout is anything outside. I love to look at the water while I walk or run and California, where Kroma is based, is blessed with many gorgeous hiking and running trails where I can see nature.”
Let’s take a look at a few exercise types you might want to mix into your workout to gain the most potential benefits. How can you mix and match your workout with your interests?
Cardio or aerobic exercise is a great way to help support your heart health — but that’s not all. Cardio workouts can be super beneficial to help maintain healthy metabolic function and a healthy heart rate, sleep quality, lung health, and immune health.
Experts generally recommend 30 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio exercise most days of the week. This doesn’t mean you need to start training for a marathon or hit the elliptical daily. You can burn fat by taking a brisk walk or hike, gardening, or playing outside with your kids or your dog.
You can also gain the potential health benefits of cardio from specific moves, like jumping jacks, jump squats, or crab walks.
Strength training is all about building your lean muscle mass through exercise. Strength training workouts have been associated with improved physical performance, improved feelings of cognitive clarity, and supported self-esteem.
Furthermore, strength training could help improve heart health, support metabolic function, and reduce visceral fat. Visceral fat can lie deep in your abdomen around your organs and can lead to adverse health conditions.
You don't have to have an expensive home gym or a membership to a gym. Of course, you can break out the bench press, dumbbells, and heavy weights. Or, you can build muscle and undergo fat loss by using your own body weight. Push-ups, planks, crunches, and lunges are all easy ways to improve your entire body strength.
The benefit of endurance exercise is increasing your ability to work out for longer periods of time. Lengthening your exercise routine helps you move into the aerobic threshold, which can help boost your overall performance. Generally, these exercises include cardio like jogging, cross country skiing, swimming, and HIIT (high-intensity interval training).
The benefits of endurance exercise and the full-body workout they provide can include supporting metabolism and heart health. You can gain muscle mass with endurance exercises.
Flexibility isn’t just important for athletes. Over time, our muscles can become tight and reduce our range of motion, which may cause pain. Some people believe that stretching five days out of the week for six weeks can significantly improve overall health, including increased blood flow, and reduced muscle soreness.
There are many flexibility workouts available in and out of the gym. You can practice yoga, pilates, or tai chi to help increase your flexibility.
How Often Should a Woman Workout?
Beginning a workout routine doesn’t mean incorporating high-intensity workouts each day. Some fitness experts recommend a 5-day workout routine with the additional two days of the week as rest days to give muscle groups a chance to repair themselves.
No matter how often you choose to work out, you’ll want to stay fueled. Grab our OMG Cookie Butter for an easy-to-tote gluten- and dairy-free treat. With plant protein, fiber, and omega-3 fats, it makes the perfect pre- or post-workout snack any day of the week.
How Long Should a Good Women’s Workout Routine Last?
Deciding how long your workout routine should last depends on your goals and your individual lifestyle. If you’re already active, you may not need an exercise routine that lasts an extended amount of time.
Lisa Odenweller states, “Hiking is a wonderful way for me to re-center and release stresses and tensions of the day. I was lucky enough to spend a week in Telluride hiking daily and the way it reset my parasympathetic nervous system was incredible.” When a workout incorporates things you already enjoy, you may not worry about setting a timer to reach your workout goals. You may manage to hit them naturally.
While any movement is better than none, your goal should be to build up to 150 to 300 minutes of moderate activity throughout the week. Strength training should be done at least twice a week to promote even more health benefits and help you maintain muscle tone.
What Are Some of the Best Workout Routines?
Now that you know the different kinds of workouts you might want to incorporate into your plan and why, let’s take a look at a few of the newest, most innovative workout options.
- Barry’s Bootcamp: Maximize potential fat loss while toning muscle with this running and weight lifting combination. It’s a form of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) that could really get your blood pumping (the curated playlists don’t hurt either).
- Tracy Anderson method: Target trouble spots with a patented exercise series emphasizing repetitive movement. Light hand weights and body resistance tone without the bulk. Numerous exercise videos give you plenty of options.
- Meta: There’s more to Meta than mindless scrolling. Grab the goggles and jump into an immersive 3D experience to get in your cardio — and have plenty of fun in the process. When’s the last time you could say that about your workout plan?
The best workout routine for you is the one you enjoy doing. Find a program that keeps it interesting with different exercises each day or that makes you feel pumped up. When you can get excited about what you’re doing, you may be far more apt to stick with it.
Look for apps that offer a home workout, a personal trainer for a good gym workout, find videos online, or make the gym preview tour for classes or solo jaunts. Determine your favorite sort of workout environment, and then seek out one that fits in with your current wellness goals and fitness levels.
How Should Women Start Working Out?
Finding time in a packed schedule to work out can be difficult for many women. Here are some ways you can incorporate a plan to reap all the incredible benefits of working out.
Make a Plan
The first step in incorporating exercise into your daily routine is to plan for it. Plan your week's workout plan when you are figuring out the rest of your schedule. Be intentional about your fitness routine. Set a designated time and commit to keeping that time, no matter how busy your week may become.
Plan specific workouts each day that align with your fitness goals, or set aside time to follow your trainer’s recommendations or those found within a premade exercise program.
If you are just starting to work out, be gentle with yourself during those early reps. Dedicate yourself to making small changes each day and build up to a full workout program. Start with a warm-up, focus on good form, especially when you are just starting out, and don’t forget to include a cooldown to help relax your muscles.
It’s tempting to rush right in, but doing too much too soon can cause an injury and make you burn out before you ever really get going. Take your time.
Not only are you increasing the strength of your muscles, but you are training them to gain muscle memory with each workout. This can help reduce the risk of injury and enable you to stay on top of your fitness goals.
Make exercise a priority. Just like you focus on eating healthy food, getting quality sleep, and spending time with loved ones, exercise should also rank high on that priority list. Make it something closer to enjoyable by getting a friend involved.
Schedule workouts with a friend for accountability that keeps both of you moving towards your goals. The extra opportunity for a bit of conversation won’t hurt either. Treat yourselves to a Vanilla Cinnamon Plant Protein Smoothie post-workout. Take your cooldown walk and chat while you enjoy a lectin-free, easy-to-digest smoothie packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and nine essential amino acids.
Eat Nutritious Food
One way to increase the health benefits of exercise and hit your weight management goals is to eat nutritious food. We know it’s not always easy. Look for ways to incorporate simple wins. Take our Super Porridge, for example.
Each of our daily essentials offers your body the nutrients it needs to support overall health and wellbeing. Super Porridge may be just what you need to start your day off with a balance of healthy fat, fiber for energy, and an easy-to-digest and lectin-free whole plant protein.
This filling breakfast can help give your body what it needs and help you get the most out of your exercise plan.
You’ve heard you need to drink plenty of water each day to keep your body running smoothly. Without enough water, your body can’t work as well. You might feel tired, have a headache, or end up with digestive issues.
When you exercise, staying hydrated becomes even more important. Exercise leads to sweating, and if you aren’t drinking water as experts recommend, you could become dehydrated.
Our Cranberry Hydration Elixir can offer you the electrolytes you need to perk up plain old water, but without the brain-draining sugary sweetness of neon-colored sports drinks. Boost your water with a delicious flavor to help you drink more throughout the day (and actually enjoy it).
Before you jump into a workout, warm up. This can include light aerobic activity that helps to raise your core body temperature and prepares your muscles for action. A brief warm-up prepares your body and mind for your workout — and may also help reduce potential soreness and injury.
How Do You Make a Workout Routine a Habit?
To see the most health benefits from working out, it's important to make it a habit. The first step to making anything a habit is consistency. Choose fun workouts (they do exist). Pick something you look forward to doing. Be consistent with your workouts, however you choose to do them, to create those habits.
Incorporating our 5-Day Lifestyle Reset can also help you recharge your nutritional goals from the start. Our reset could have you create healthy eating habits while you get used to your new workout plan. It’s basically a win all-around.
Are There Special Considerations for Women Who Start Exercising?
There is no one specific workout plan that’s best for a woman. Everyone is unique and has their own fitness goals. When beginning a workout program, look at your strength, range of motion, and current fitness levels. Figure out what you’d like to achieve. Make those goals attainable yet challenging.
If you are doing something you love, you might not even bother to watch the clock or consider the activity a workout. “Hiking is a wonderful way for me to re-center and release stresses and tensions of the day. I was lucky enough to spend a week in Telluride hiking daily and the way it reset my parasympathetic nervous system was incredible,” shares Kroma founder Lisa Odenweller
Work up to your goals slowly, remember to hydrate, and eat foods that support your active lifestyle.
The Bottom Line
There are so many incredible health benefits for women when they incorporate a workout program into their daily lives. No two women are the same, so finding a weekly workout plan that matches your physical abilities, goals, and schedule is important.
While Kroma Wellness can’t work out for you, we can provide you with the nutritionally dense foods that can help support your health and wellness journey — and your exercise program.
Gender Differences in Exercise Habits and Quality of Life Reports: Assessing the Moderating Effects of Reasons for Exercise |PMC
Women | Surgeon General Report | CDC
Cardiovascular benefits of exercise | PMC
Resistance training is medicine: effects of strength training on health | PubMed
Endurance training: is it bad for you? | PMC
The Simple Act of Stretching - Center for Healthy Aging | Colorado State University
Executive Summary: Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition | health.gov