top of page

How to plan your workout week. 3 Perspectives.

Do you have a formula for your workout programming? Is it a routine or do you generally do what you feel like doing? There is something to be said for listening to your body and moving with intuition. There is also major value in having a daily/weekly/monthly or even quarterly program.

I am a trainer. I am paid to create plans, program workouts, and even WORKOUT with my clients. My week is going to look different than the average person. As a professional, I need to keep a higher level of endurance and stamina at all times. I energize my clients with my own energy. Sounds fun but also daunting, right!? It is.

In order to tackle the topic of workout programming, I have enlisted three different opinions. You will see each of these ladies have varying lifestyles, circumstances, family dynamics, etc. The common thread is a desire to prioritize their workouts. As you are reading, I encourage you to identify with one or even two of them--how are you alike, or different? Maybe their routine will spark some inspiration for next week's plan. OR, maybe you decide to try an entire month or quarter of a certain style!

Let me introduce Emily Bass.

I am @emilypbass on IG. I'm a stay-at-home mom of two boys (2 & 4yo), who are firecrackers (read: they will not sit down to color, or be quiet, or be still for that matter). I learned early on I was going to have to fit workouts in when I could in order to get them done.

I am a mental health counselor/therapist turned stay-at-home mom, and I'm now a distributor with Young Living. I'm really passionate about helping moms with their overall wellness, but just with my background with mental health, I really love to focus on their emotional wellbeing, including sleep and stress, and especially postpartum care with anxiety and feeling emotionally overwhelmed. I love helping families ditch their toxic products and switch to safer alternatives using plant-based essential oils!

I grew up a competitive swimmer, so I was doing two-a-day practices at 12-years-old, and then I played a sport every season of high school. I think discipline with physical exercise got drilled somewhere deep down into my brain because of those experiences. As an adult, I carried the mindset that "more is more" for so long, that I would make myself workout even when my body didn't feel like it. My body hurt and I was sore all the time for pretty much my entire 20s.

After I had my second child, I had to be smarter and more efficient if I wanted to get a workout in. I started reading about hypertrophic training and changing body composition more through weight training and building muscle instead of doing all this cardio. As an avid runner, this was a huge thing for me to grasp. To let go of so much cardio meant that I was sort of letting go of my identity of being a runner. But over the last year-and-a-half of strength training as the bulk of my workouts, I've grown so much stronger (duh!) and my body composition has changed. I'm back to my wedding weight - pre two kids - and my body doesn't hurt all the time! Hallelujah. I used to do total body every time I would work out. But now I do workouts with only one muscle group focus and I have been able to get stronger and leaner that way. I run one - yes only one - day a week. And it's short, like 3-4, maybe 5 miles at the most, pushing a stroller with my youngest. But I'm actually faster because I'm stronger and I'm more rested. So with that said, here is what I do.

I started with inspiration from Madeline Moves workouts on Instagram a year-and-a-half ago, and now I build out my own schedule based on what I want to do. I plan my workouts the night before and make myself a note of what equipment I'll need because every minute counts for me when I'm doing these workouts in my youngest's naptime and my older son's quiet time. So I just put them in their rooms and GO! I never workout more than an hour, and because I'm switching up my muscle groups every day, I give the worked muscles a chance to recover and rebuild.

Mondays: legs - usually a focus like glutes or posterior chain, as an example. I do add in plyo occasionally.

Tuesdays: Upper body - shoulders, biceps, I'll mix in some plyo moves.

Wednesdays: More of HIIT or cardio focused day with core. Strength moves that get my heartrate up and also straight HIIT.

Thursdays: Chest and back. Occasional plyo.

Fridays: I'll do a second leg day. With a different focus.

Saturdays: Run.

Sundays: If I get a wild hair and just need to move, I'll do a total body workout, but with more of a bodyweight focus, or unilateral moves, or focus on balance or something that would be challenging for me.

* I also walk most weekdays for about 30 mins. This is when I talk on the phone while I push the stroller or listen to podcasts, sermons, what have you. I need the Vitamin D, and it feels good to do low intensity cardio like that! When it gets super cold, I may ride our Peloton on occasion, but that's pretty rare!

If I ever get a chance to take a good friend's Live class, if my husband is home for a holiday or something, I do that! And that just replaces whatever day I have planned. I don't stress about it. I'm just here for the endorphins and the functional fitness so that I can pick up my massive children, and carry in the huge amount of food from Costco that is needed to feed three boys (including my husband), ha! Having the time to workout, even just for 30 mins a day, is important for me as a stay-at-home-mom because I just need that amount of time for myself in a season where I'm pouring out all of myself for every other member of my family. I need that little amount of time to do something for me and fill me back up so that I can continue to pour out and be a better mom and wife for my people! It truly helps me to have that time and space where I don't think about any other need and just move my body!

I would say to find some inspiration from someone that you like in order to get your programming down, or just follow their programming for a while, and then make your schedule, organize what you'll need and then go. If you're like me with two small kids and a small window of time to get it done, you do what you gotta do to make it work!

Notes from Carrie:

SO much good information here. My favorite things she said:

-Less running/cycling/cardio is important to see muscular changes. Read that again.

-Muscle splits to encourage more strength and see results quicker. Add in some plyometrics for a heart rate boost and added resistance without extra weights.

-Two leg days.

-Planning and making it happen.


Next, allow me to introduce Jenna Bertram Nygarrd.

You can find Jenna on Instagram @Jennabnygaard

Currently, I'm a Full Time Mom (with a little side hustle going on). Prior to Covid, I was working full time in Fitness as the Talent Development Lead and Master Instructor at Flywheel. Since Flywheel closed its doors I began teaching cycling classes via Zoom (Monday 5:30pm & Friday 7:00am) and doing some outdoor private training.

When I was working in fitness full time my workouts were almost built in for me since I taught 6 days per week. Since Covid began, I've had to start planning out and scheduling my workouts to make sure I can get them in. I'm a morning workout person by nature, so most days I try to get it done first thing. Since I'm mostly a stay at home mom right now and my husband is working full time, I'm usually down in my garage by 6:30am working out. I have found that (and as all you other mamas know) the day can get away from you and being a mom can be exhausting, so making sure I get my workout done early before the craziness of the day begins ensures no excuses get in the way later.

Fitness has been a huge part of my life for as long as I can remember. It's my "me time". Working out for me allows me to feel strong and healthy physically, but also mentally. My workouts are a time when I can destress and tune out the rest of the world for 30-60 minutes.

I'm an admitted cardio junky. In my full time fitness job, I was teaching 12+ cycling classes per week and have been a runner for many years. One thing that has shifted since the start of the pandemic was mostly all of my workouts are done at home. I have shifted my workouts to include a lot more strength/resistance training and some HIIT training days. I have seen such great results from doing one challenging and effective workout per day vs. the days of 2+ cycling classes per day and trying to do some extra resistance training when my body was already exhausted.

Group fitness is still a passion of mine and thrive in the group workout settings. Currently to get my group fitness fix during these crazy times, I'm teaching 2 LIVE Zoom cycle classes per week, usually try to ride in one extra and love the take 30-30-10 HIIT class with Carrie at CK/Crush. Additionally I try to do 4-5 strength/resistance sessions per week (breaking up lower body day, 2 upper body days and a full body day) and 1-2 runs on the weekends.

It's important for everyone to make time for movement, both mentally and physically. Try different things to find out what you love so that it becomes easier to make time for it in your day!

Notes from Carrie:

Jenna's schedule used to be rigorous. She taught the most amount of classes each week of ANY instructor in the CLT studio. I find it to be the most interesting how Jenna has found peace in workout out less and enjoying the results.

- 4-5 resistance training sessions per week is ideal

- Getting the workout done first thing before her kid wakes up. No excuses!

- Finding workouts that she enjoys so it's fun and something to look forward to.


Finally, allow me to introduce Julianna Rubino!

@fitblonde_ - I'm a certified personal trainer with 6+ years group fitness experience. Fitness is my passion and while this year has definitely been an interesting one, it has also allowed me the opportunity to learn, grow and shift. I'm currently doing in-person personal and small group training, private zoom classes and providing weekly training plans to clients. Will be adding some class times in the near future (more details to come shortly .. follow me on IG if interested)!

I’m 28 years old, live in an apartment with my boyfriend and dog and work full-time in sales. This year has definitely brought it’s fair share of changes including my job shifting from spending my day split between the office and on client site to working mostly remote in my one bedroom apartment. Although I have more flexibility with my schedule due to working mostly remote, I’ve tried to stay consistent with my routine, including workouts.

I’m definitely more of a morning person. After work I’m typically exhausted and can come up with all of the excuses of why not to workout. I typically start my day between 5-5:30AM. Although I have more time now that I’m not commuting to the office (and don’t need to spend as much time getting ready either), I still find that I like to have extra time in the morning for myself without feeling rushed.

My weekly workout routine is a mix of studio classes and programming my own workouts in my apartment gym. I typically do strength training 3-4X per week and HIIT 2-3X per week. My workouts are typically 45 mins to an hour. I used to do more cardio/running, but recently my cardio comes in shorter bursts from HIIT style workouts/classes or a run before a strength training workout (recently I’ve been running a mile on the treadmill, but when it’s nice outside I run more). That’s what works for me now, but I’m sure I’ll switch it up again. If I start to feel like I’m plateau tin in my workouts (physically or mentally) that's when I know it’s time to mix things up.

Making time for my workouts is really important to me. When I don’t, I’m less productive and happy in other areas of my life. It doesn’t need to be an intense workout every day, but even just blocking off time to take a 30 minute walk goes a long way. Having worked in sales for the past 7 years I’ve become very regimented in my job and I look at my workouts the same way. I schedule my workouts like I would meetings and see them as a commitment to myself. I also prepare ahead of time to get the most out of my workouts. I wouldn’t just show up to a meeting without having a plan going into it, so why would I show up to a workout without a plan? This mindset definitely helps me be more efficient with my time and get the most out of my workouts/time spent in the gym.

Notes from Carrie:

I love Julianna's philosophy of switching things up when you need a change. The body does adapt to exercise and routines, so we all need to keep things fresh.

- Again with the theme--less cardio, more strength, more results.

-Planning workouts ahead of time to maximize efficiency

-Creating the time for workouts. It's not always easy to slide in a workout, so zoom out on the week and figure it out ahead of time.

-Every workout doesn't have to be intense. Walking is an awesome way to de-stress, burn a few cals, increase the heart-rate, and provide some major endorphins for your day.

75 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Final Hurrah for September Challenge

I am writing you on a rainy Saturday morning. It is a little chilly out and I bought some skulls and skeletons from Target yesterday. The girls are getting very into "scary halloween" this year. Ke

September Challenge Week 3

Ok, this is historically the toughest week to continue into your habits. If you're walking more, running more, lifting more...keep doing it!!! I know most of you don't have any issue with working out

September Challenge week 2

Last week was a shorter week with the holiday + starting on a Wednesday. We have a FULL week to get some hard things done :) Here are the Challenge focus items for this week: Complete 3x CK classes t


bottom of page