If you've ever set goals for yourself when beginning a new workout routine, you've probably wondered just how long it will take for you to see the results of your exercise.
Maybe you're looking to build up some muscles in your biceps, or increase your endurance when running, or perhaps you just want to lift your booty up toward the heavens.
But maybe you're also looking for something a little less tangible out of your fitness routine. Perhaps you're hoping to find a little relief from your anxiety, or quiet your mind at night when your conscience just won't STFU.
Whatever your intentions for exercise may be, it's definitely going to take some time -- and commitment, of course -- to see those positive changes, both physical and mental.
If you're looking to see some shifts in muscular strength, it'll probably take about eight weeks.
Of course, this isn't a hard-and-fast number that will apply to everyone, but it's a solid rule of thumb for most.
To make sure you're right on track with your goals, be sure to develop consistent habits your body will appreciate, such as stretching before and after a workout, eating balanced meals, and allowing yourself rest days when you need them.
It's also crucial to remember the importance of proper form when performing any exercise, especially when it comes to strength training.
Ensuring good form will guarantee your body is moving in the right direction toward the results you want, and you'll be preventing unnecessary injury along the way, too.
Sure, this might mean you can't work out quite as fast as you may want, or you may not be able to do as many reps in one set as you would like.
That's OK -- achieving your goals, and maintaining your safety, are both way more important, don't you think?
If you're a runner looking to increase your endurance, the timeline will sort of depend on the person.
Generally speaking, it's best to not go over an increase of two to four miles every other week in your running routine.
Be sure to include strength training and stretching, as both will really help to ease the strains that running can put on your joints.
Plus, these practices will help you run faster and longer over time -- remember, consistency in your routine is key.
As for those emotional benefits, the good news is you can results hella fast.
In a sense, these changes can be instant.
According to the American Association of Anxiety and Depression, a mere five minutes of exercise can start stimulating an anti-anxiety effect that can last up to a few hours.
And there are even studies showing that a 10-minute brisk walk is just as good for de-stressing and mood elevation as 45 minutes of cardio.
Plus, here's a good overall pro tip: Make sure you're switching up your workout patterns after about six to 12 weeks of exercise, so you can conquer those physical plateaus and challenge new muscles in your body.
Whatever your fitness goals may be, with a little consistency and creativity, you're sure to see the results you want, and deserve.