Exercises and Workouts – Are Three Workouts a Week All You Need?

There is a common misconception in the community in regards to exercise and fitness. Many people have been led to believe for workouts to be effective, they must be carried out without fail, every day. Some will even go so far as to believe in the ‘all-or-none’ principle: either exercise is made a part of everyday life, or it is not worthwhile and just as futile as not doing any form of exercise. Of course, this is a misunderstanding. Suggesting a balance is not enough is utterly false.

Maybe the reason why such advice is widespread is it feels good to test our willpower. Making exercise a daily habit is tough, so we feel a sense of accomplishment when we can commit to working out every day. This effect is even more pronounced in those who were previously inactive. Because it feels highly rewarding to achieve this feat, some people will suggest anything less is not sufficient or is potentially a waste of time.


However, as many unfortunately discover, willpower has its limits. It is simply too much to ask of ourselves to exercise on six or seven days a week for weeks on end. At some point, going off track is inevitable, and this proves to be disastrous to those who told themselves anything less than what they were previously capable of doing was not enough. It causes cognitive dissonance and ultimately, many end up abandoning their health goals.

For a case in point of the above, refer to the vast majority of New Year’s resolutions. Success, as we all discover, is not something we can achieve overnight. It does not help to find many people have to learn this the hard way.

The point to take away here is this: there is no need to ask so much of yourself. When it comes to exercise, do not attempt to push your limits. It is entirely unnecessary. And in the long run, it has no added benefits to your efforts to lose weight, reduce your blood sugar levels, or become healthy.

For the vast majority of people, three workouts a week are all that is necessary. Exercise more if you would like, but know you cannot possibly go wrong with three days of activity. It is the balance most people need. If it feels like three workouts a week is not enough, consider the big picture. There are 52 weeks in a year. Theoretically, this means you could do 156 workouts in a year. Give or take of course. Doesn’t that seem like a number that makes a difference?


Most New Year’s resolutions are abandoned before the start or end of February. Even if 30 workouts are managed in this short period, it is nothing compared to the 100+ you would do otherwise by pacing yourself. Think long-term.

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