Have you heard of the Five Stages of Fitness?

If you want to have your workouts leave you healthier and feeling stronger, more energized, and more mobile while not bogging down your days or overwhelming your schedule, this is a concept you need to know about.

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Regardless if you are brand-new to exercising or you have been working out for decades, you fall into one of the categories of the Five Stages of Fitness.

Understanding where you are is crucial to being able to move forward and progress to Stage 5. And being at Stage 5 isn’t just for the self-acknowledgement of knowing you did it; it is truly the most important thing to remaining strong, fit, and healthy long-term.

So what are the Five Stages of  Fitness and where do you fall in? Let’s take a look…

Stage 1: You are not exercising and don’t have any desire to exercise

This is where many people find themselves… They aren’t exercising at all and have absolutely no plans to start today.

Understand this – Being in Stage 1 isn’t an issue. Staying in Stage 1 is.

So what comes after this??

Stage 2: You are not exercising and you do have a desire to exercise

In Stage 2, you still aren’t exercising, but now the intention is on your radar.

Maybe you or somebody you are close to had a health scare.

Maybe you tried walking your new puppy and got winded faster than you expected.

Maybe you were playing with your grandkids in the yard and suddenly realized, “I’m not as young as I used to be.”

However it happens, having a desire to start exercising immediately moves you from Stage 1 to Stage 2.

But now it comes time to do something about it, and that’s where we get to Stage 3.

Stage 3: You are exercising inconsistently (one to two days a week) AND your workouts are focused on things outside of your body (weight, reps, speed, time, etc.)

Stage 3 is when you start putting in the work of exercising and working out, albeit inconsistently.

One of the easiest ways to transition from Stage 2 to Stage 3 is to start moving consistently throughout your day. Every hour, get up and move for three to 10 minutes at time. Aim to do that at least six times a day. Set your phone timer to go off to remind you to get up and move to make it easier to do.

Once you start stacking the days together where you are getting up and moving around frequently, you will soon realize all of the time that exists in your schedule to start doing workouts that are a little bit longer.

We suggest starting with what we call Little Workouts, which are workouts that take 20 to 25 minutes, sometimes less; they work your entire body; and they can be strength-focused, cardio-focused, or a mix of both.

Little Workouts are exclusively what we offer in the Exercise For Life Membership, which you can try for 14 days for free by clicking here.

Now, doing the workouts we offer in the Exercise For Life Membership will actually move you right to Stage 5, so keep reading to find out how that happens.

Stage 4: You are exercising consistently (three days a week or more) and your workouts are focused on things outside of your body

Stage 4 is where most people stop progressing their workouts. They figure, “I am exercising consistently… What more can I do?”

And in all fairness, we are often told that exercising consistently is the end of the road.

“Are you exercising at least three days a week? Great! You’re doing enough…” – that is the message we are often told.

But this is wrong.

It is wrong for the one simple reason that Stage 4 is not setting you up to be healthier. In many respects, it is not even setting you up to be stronger, more fit, or more mobile.

In fact, Stage 4 is where almost everybody who gets hurt from exercising has the injury happen.

They have built up their frequency and are exercising on a regular basis. Things seem to be going great, until one workout – BAM! Like they got struck by a bolt of lightning, all of a sudden their back gets thrown out, their hamstring gets tweaked, or they get a sharp pain in their shoulder.

Unfortunately, this causes most people to drop back to Stage 2 or sometimes even Stage 1, where they aren’t exercising at all.

Most people find themselves caught in this loop of getting consistent with their workouts, hurting themselves, taking time off, starting up again, increasing their frequency, and hurting themselves again.

Eventually, they just decide that it’s not worth the effort anymore and they decide to stay in Stage 1 forever – not exercising and having no interest in starting back up again.

So how can you avoid this vicious cycle that so many find themselves in?

That requires you to progress to Stage 5.

Stage 5: Exercise For Life – You are exercising consistently and your workouts are focused on what is going on within your body (squeezing your muscles)

Now, most people never make it to Stage 5, in part because they don’t know Stage 5 exists. Most people figure that just haphazardly doing something regularly throughout their week is enough.

But not you. You now know better than that, and that is exactly what we try to help you with during every workout in the Exercise For Life Membership.

When you get to Stage 5, you leave every workout feeling stronger, more mobile, and more energized than when you started.

Gone are the days of feeling achy, beat up, and sore after your workouts. Instead, your workouts feel like they supercharge your body, your brain, and your life.

Every workout you do in Stage 5 sets you up to come back and workout again the next day, making it easier and easier for you to keep your momentum going and continuing to get stronger and healthier.

Stage 5 truly is the pinnacle of exercising appropriately for your body, maximizing your performance and results with minimal risk of injury or issues.

The great news about the Five Stages is you don’t have to go through each of them prior to reaching Stage 5. In fact, Stage 5 – Exercise For Life – is available for you to skip to at any point in time.

Every workout within the Exercise For Life Membership is designed to keep your focus within your body, while the monthly Exercise For Life Tracks our Members get are set up to help you workout at least four times a week.

Not only is this the surest way for you to build your health, strength, and function on a consistent basis, but it will also set you up to keep doing all of the things in life that you enjoy the most for the long-term.

Which, for most of us, is the reason we are doing this exercise thing to begin with.

So, where do you find yourself within the Five Stages of Fitness today? Wherever you are at, you can always jump to (or stay at) Stage 5 simply by enrolling in the Exercise For Life Membership for FREE  and hopping on a workout 😊

We can’t wait to see you there!

Julie & Charlie

Team MAS

Muscle Activation Schaumburg is an exercise facility located in Schaumburg, IL with a goal to help you keep your health for as long as possible. We know that it is your health that allows you to do the things you love in life. This is why we promote a lifestyle that includes exercise, rather than exercise that is a burden to your life. Muscle Activation Schaumburg provides Muscle Activation Techniques® (MAT®) and personal training services to its clients. We use MAT® and exercise to increase the function of your body. A well-functioning body is what allows you to stay healthy and do the things you love. We value helping the members of our community of Schaumburg as well as surrounding communities of the Northwest Suburbs improve their health.