Many people choose to plan a workout to ensure it is as efficient as possible and that it works on the specific areas in which one needs improvement. Many times, people who do not plan their workouts find themselves trying out different machines and weights at random. While this isn't necessarily a bad thing, it can often lead to ineffective workouts. One who chooses to plan a workout generally spends less time figuring out what to do and more time effectively working out.
To plan a workout, one must first determine what the specific workout will focus on. A workout that focuses on cardiovascular endurance will be entirely different than a workout that focuses on muscular strength or on muscular endurance, and it is important to plan a workout accordingly. To decide what a given workout will focus on, one should examine his goals. If weight loss is a goal, for example, the workout should probably be based around aerobic exercises that burn many calories, with some weight lifting activity to increase muscle, as added muscle helps burn more calories.
Once the focus of the workout has been established, one must determine the amount of time he wants to spend exercising. Often, workout time is limited by factors such as work or family commitments; making the most out of limited time is very important. Sometimes, this is not an issue and one has more than enough time for a full workout. In this case, it is still important to set a certain amount of time to ensure that one does not work too much or too little.
Location is the next decision for one who wants to plan a workout. The location of a workout typically is based on time, money, and the specific type of workout available. Those who can afford gym memberships often choose to work out at the gym because of the many options available to them there. If time or money is an issue, however, a home workout or office workout is an acceptable alternative. Sometimes, all one needs is good weather—running outdoors can make an excellent workout!
Finally, once these details have been established, it is time to plan the specific exercises of the workout. These depend on the other details already established: goals, focus, amount of available time, and location. It is important to plan as specifically as possible—not having to decide how many repetitions of which weights to lift will save a decent amount of time and lead to a more efficient workout.