How boring would working out be if you never changed things up? Sticking with a routine long enough to make progress is important, but so is staying motivated and engaged. If you find yourself getting bored with your workouts, then chances are you won’t put in the necessary effort to get better, so mixing it up every so often is crucial.
Outside of your indicator exercises, you should switch up your movements on a semi-regular basis. For most people, every 4–6 weeks is a reasonable timetable to change your strength-training exercises, stretching movements, running routine, etc. When we say switch it up, we don’t mean change everything all at once to the point where the routine is unrecognizable compared to your previous one. We’re talking about subtle changes that are just enough to keep things interesting while still moving toward your goals. For example:
Switch from reverse lunges to walking lunges.
Switch from pushups to dumbbell bench press
Switch from traditional static stretching to a guided yoga workout
Switch from running on a treadmill to running outdoors.
In all these instances, the exercise category is the same but subtly different to keep things fresh.
Try out some of these workout routines down below if you're ever feeling like it is time for you to switch up your workout!
Bench press: keep indefinitely, trying to increase weight over time. Lats: rotate exercises every 4–6 weeks (i.e., lat pulldowns, pullups, etc.)
Rows: rotate exercises every 4–6 weeks (i.e., dumbbell rows, machine rows, etc.)
Finisher: rotate every workout, switching muscle groups each time (i.e., biceps, triceps, shoulders, etc.)
Squat: keep indefinitely, trying to increase weight over time
Hamstrings: rotate exercises every 4–6 weeks (i.e., deadlifts, leg curls, etc.)
Abs: rotate exercises every 4–6 weeks (i.e., front planks, side planks, etc.)
HIIT: rotate every workout, switching exercises each time (i.e., bike sprints, kettlebell swings, etc.)