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Look at your schedule to see where strength training may best fit in—perhaps on weekday mornings before work or during your favorite evening television program. There are no rules about the best time to exercise. But keep in mind that you should schedule your sessions on three non-consecutive days of week (say, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday; or Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday) in order to give your muscles proper rest. Alternatively, you can try doing lower body exercises one day and then upper body exercises the next; this way, you will avoid overworking the same muscle groups.

Put your scheduled strength-training appointments on your calendar and keep them faithfully, just as you would a doctor's appointment. You might also try to find an exercise partner who can join you for your scheduled sessions; working with a friend will help you adhere to your regimen and keep you motivated.

Here are some tips on scheduling exercise:

  • Consider what days best suit your schedule, given your other commitments.
  • Pick a time of day at which you find exercise enjoyable: Some people like to exercise first thing in the morning; others are more motivated in the evening or afternoon.
  • Write your first exercise appointments on your calendar.
  • After completing your first two or three sessions, evaluate whether your selected days and times work well for you. If they don't, reexamine your schedule and try to find better times.
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 2014 State Indicator Report on Physical Activity cover The U.S. Government's Official Web PortalDepartment of Health and Human Services
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