College life is full of hard classes, extracurriculars, and involved social lives. Knowing how busy college students can be, it can be hard to figure out a workout schedule that works for you. For most people it is necessary to vary the days on which they work out depending on how busy their schedules are, but the basics of a good workout plan require three different kinds of workouts: push, pull, and legs. A good workout schedule requires that each of these types of workouts be done once a week on different days. For example, I tend to do push workouts on Mondays, pull workouts on Wednesdays and legs on Friday or Saturday, depending on when I have time.

Chest Press machine, taken by Rebecca Downing

A push workout contracts your muscles as weight is being pushed away from your body. A few of the main muscles used in push workouts are the chest, triceps, quadriceps, calves, and shoulders. Essentially, the “work” in the workout is done when your muscle contracts as you push the weight away from the starting position. A few of the main pull workouts that I do include the bench press, chest press, incline dumbbell press, and tricep dips

Bicep Curl machine, taken by Rebecca Downing

A pull workout is the exact opposite of a push workout. The main muscles used in pull workouts are all back muscles, biceps, hamstrings, obliques, and trapezius. The work is done when you use these muscle groups to pull weight towards your body. A few of the most common pull workouts include lat pulldowns, pull ups, bicep curls, and dumbbell rows

Leg workouts, obviously, are meant to workout the muscles in your legs. Most people that workout will tell you that leg day is the most important day of the week. This is because when leg day is neglected, the entire bottom half of your body suffers. Leg workouts, like squats, leg press, and lunges strengthen the muscles around weak joints and help to build stability and mobility. 

Another really good addition to your workout schedule is cardio. Doing cardio, entails running either on a track, on a treadmill, or on an elliptical. Having a good cardio routine helps to speed up our metabolism and shed body fat. Because of this it helps to improve our Body Mass Index, or BMI. It also helps improve our blood pressure by raising our heart rate and improving the circulation of blood throughout the body. I tend to do cardio either before or after my workouts as a warm-up or cool-down routine. 

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