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GeneralGym Fitness

Finding Focus: Should You Only Work One Body Part Per Gym Session?

Published: 7/13/15

Every year, millions of individuals visit the gym. They do so to learn how to get fit, to get one-on-one attention from a personal trainer, and to use the high-end equipment. However, many exercisers come to the gym without a lot of experience. Working with a trainer or taking a fitness class will help, but it is also important to learn more about setting realistic goals and learning the basics of working out. A common misconception, for example, is that you should come to the gym and work out just one area of the body during that session. It may not be as clear as you think.


Should You Focus On Just One Body Part?

Are you the type of person that likes to work out a sole area of the body during each session? If you focus just on your legs or just on your arms, you may not be giving other parts of your body enough attention. While you will want to work out more than just one group of muscles during your workout session, you should focus on one area. For example, instead of just working your calves, work your lower body. That includes everything from the hips downward. Don’t focus just on your legs. The same is true for your upper body. Work on your trunk, arms, shoulders, and back during a session rather than working just your arms.


Why Not Just One Area?

There are a few reasons why focusing on just one area can be problematic for you:

  • Will you be in the gym enough to give your total body a complete workout at least one time per week? You’ll want to ensure that your body receives equal attention from top to bottom at least once per week. If you don’t do this, make sure that your routine allows for more than one area of the body to receive attention during each session.
  • Many people become “top heavy” because they focus on upper body workouts. This isn’t good for balance, but it is also straining on the rest of the body. Ensure that your upper and lower body get even attention even if you want bulging biceps.
  • You risk injury if you do not work out all components of your body equally. Work with your personal trainer to ensure that you are getting an even workout.


Don’t Skip Certain Body Parts

It is important to balance your workouts to ensure that all body parts get appropriate attention. To balance your workouts, focus on complimentary components of the body. For example, if you are working out your abs, work out your lower back at the same time. This ensures that both muscle groups, which tend to work together, get equal attention. Do the same thing with your quads and hamstrings, biceps and triceps.


Rest in Between

For most individuals, the best workout routine is to do upper body one day, take a day off, and then do lower body the next. Keep doing this and you’ll have an even workout that drives total body fitness. Do not skip the in-between rest day, though. It is important to give muscles time to heal and recover from an intense workout. You don’t want to overwork any muscle group because this can lead to injury and long-lasting damage.


Weight Loss Workouts

A big mistake some people make when trying to lose weight is to focus exercise regimens on specific areas they wish to target for weight loss. Fat comes off the body evenly through diet and cardio workouts. No matter how many sit-ups you do, you’ll still need to get your heart rate up and eat properly to burn the fatty tissue in this area.

Overall, you should target a full body workout that incorporates all muscles in total at least one time per week. It is best to balance these workouts and muscle groups to avoid injury. And, be sure to get that day of rest in to allow all muscle groups to recover.