Rome wasn’t built in a day, and that goes even for the results of your fitness routine. So how long does it take to see results from your workouts? Keep reading.
Updated Date: Oct 26, 2023 | 17:00 IST
With consistent and planned exercise, you can expect to see results within 2-3 months. (Image credit: Freepik)
You’ve started a new exercise routine. You’re all excited and excited, but waiting for the results of your exercise routine can feel like the hardest part. Who doesn’t want to see instant changes, right? But the truth is, even with all the data on your smartwatch, whether it’s your heart rate, your VO2 max, or your weight, it can take a while before you start noticing significant changes. So the real question is: How long do you actually have to wait for these workout results to become visible?
Let’s take a look at the timelines to see progress in aerobic capacity, weight loss, muscle definition, mental health and more. Also read on to find out what it takes to get there.
Time Frame for Weight Loss
The time it takes to see weight loss results after starting an exercise routine varies from person to person. Several factors come into play, including the intensity and consistency of your workouts, your diet, and your individual metabolism. Typically, it is common to start noticing some changes within a few weeks, such as increased energy and decreased bloating. However, significant weight loss usually requires consistent effort over several months. Remember that it’s important to focus on overall health, not just the number on the scale; Because building muscle and losing fat can positively impact your body composition, even if the scale doesn’t change dramatically right away.
Also remember that a calorie deficit is the basic principle of losing weight. This means you consume fewer calories than your body needs to maintain its current weight. When you consistently maintain a calorie deficit, your body will begin to use stored energy (in the form of fat) to make up for the difference.
The general rule of thumb for losing weight safely and sustainably is to aim for a calorie deficit that results in a loss of approximately 0.45 to 0.9 kilograms per week. This ratio is frequently recommended by healthcare professionals and is considered a healthy and achievable goal.
When looking at the breakdown of weight loss, one pound of body weight is roughly equivalent to a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories. So to lose half that per week, you’d need to create a calorie deficit of about 500 calories per day. So, to lose one pound per week, you should aim for a calorie deficit of approximately 1,000 calories per day.
Timeframe for improving Aerobic Capacity
According to experts, it takes approximately 8-12 weeks to improve your cardiovascular health and endurance. Aerobic training 3 to 5 days a week will improve your cardiovascular fitness. When you’re just starting out, just 15 minutes of cardiovascular exercise can help increase your endurance. But most studies show that you should aim to exercise for at least 30 minutes three times a week to get a significant increase in aerobic capacity for about 8 to 12 weeks. If you are an athlete looking to increase your lactate threshold through high-intensity sustained training, your exercise sessions should range from 25 to 50 minutes, depending on your fitness level.
For those interested in interval training to increase aerobic power, it is recommended that intervals last at least 60 to 90 seconds at low or high intensity, with 1 to 2 minutes of rest in between. It is recommended that you collaborate with a knowledgeable fitness professional to help you create a training plan that determines the number and duration of both your workout and rest intervals.
Time frame for impact on mental health
According to the American Psychological Association, just 5 minutes of moderate exercise is enough to produce happiness hormones and lift your mood. The time it takes to experience the positive effects of exercise on mental health can be very personal. For some, you may begin to feel a better mood after just a few weeks of regular exercise. This is because exercise triggers the release of endorphins, which are feel-good hormones. If you’re looking for more lasting and significant benefits, such as a reduction in symptoms of depression and anxiety, consistent exercise over a few weeks to a few months is usually necessary. Many studies suggest that approximately 12 weeks of regular physical activity can lead to significant improvements in mental health.
Remember, individual factors such as the type of exercise you do, how intense you do it, your fitness level and genetics can play a role in how quickly you feel these positive effects.
Time interval to lower blood pressure
According to experts, you may see a drop in your blood pressure within two to three weeks of starting your exercise plan. So how does it work? When you start improving your cardiovascular fitness through exercise, your body kicks into gear. Your heart rate begins to rise and works harder to keep blood circulating efficiently throughout your body. For example, if a person who is not very active decides to join a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) class, his heart rate may rise quickly, possibly even reaching its maximum, because he is starting from a low point. aerobic fitness. Cardiac muscles are not used at this level of intense activity.
However, as the same person continues his exercise routine, his blood pressure tends to decrease along with his resting heart rate as his body adapts to the physical demands. But what you need for real results is three months of consistent exercise, four to five times a week.
Time period in which results will be seen strength training
As your neuromuscular system becomes more adept at activating muscle fibers, you will likely experience improvements in strength and endurance within a few weeks, sometimes as early as 2 to 6 weeks. If you’re aiming for visible muscle definition, this usually takes longer; usually about 2 to 6 months or more. Establishing muscle size or hypertrophy can take approximately 3 to 6 months for visible changes, with continued progression over time. Fat loss through weightlifting can be aided by proper nutrition and consistent exercise, but the timeline for noticeable fat loss depends on several factors. The important thing is to be consistent, because steady progress often comes with time and effort. Individual genetics, specific goals, and lifestyle factors all contribute to the rate at which you see results, making this a personalized journey.