Morning everyone!

This weekend I attended the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) workshop at Salem State University.

For those of you who don’t know, I am planning on taking the CPT exam in a couple of months because I am looking to expand my current fitness credentials.  I wasn’t required to take this workshop before the test, but I wanted the optional hands on experience because I felt it would help me while studying.  I learned SO much in exercise prescription, program design, pre-screening assessments, anatomy & kinesiology, nutrition, and much more.  I actually didn’t want the workshop to end because I wanted to keep learning more.

Is this what college was supposed to feel like?!

Anyways, during the workshop there were so many times I kept thinking, “I can’t wait to blog about this” or “This would make a great blog post!”  I am excited to (hopefully) soon have another certification under my belt to back my blogging.  I’m excited to maybe even do some personal training along with my group exercise classes on the side.  So don’t be surprised if you start seeing a lot more informational posts regarding the things I learned!

Plus, blogging about them will just help me study and reinforce the material because that’s the kind of learner I am.

The first thing I’d like to share are ACSM’s guidelines for getting enough exercise and what the standard recommendations are for cardiovascular, muscular strength/endurance, and flexibility per week.

[Cartoon Source]

Take a second before you continue reading.  What do you think are the recommended norms for each of these fitness areas?  Do you think you already get enough exercise?

ACSM has a principle called the F.I.T.T.E Principle to assist personal trainers with health fitness programming.  The components of F.I.T.T.E make up any standard exercise program for a client and include the following aspects:

  • Frequency – the number of sessions per day and week, how often you are exercising
  • Intensity – how challenging the exercise is, or the amount of effort/work invested in a particular exercise
  • Time or Duration – the length of the exercise session, varies based on intensity and type
  • Type or Mode – how are you exercising, what exercises will be performed?
  • Enjoyment – the principle that it needs to be made fun in order to be a success

Cardiovascular Fitness

  • Frequency:  3 – 5 days a week
  • Intensity:  57(64) – 94% of your maximum heart rate (HRmax) OR 30(40) – 85% of your heart rate reserve (HRreserve).
  • Time or Duration:  20 – 90 minutes
  • Type or Mode:  Running, cycling, swimming, etc.  Anything that targets large muscle groups.
  • Enjoyment!

More to come on the intensity calculations later!


  • Frequency:  2 – 3 days a week
  • Intensity:  2 – 4 sets, 8 – 12 reps, 8 – 10 different exercises, with 2 – 3 minutes of rest in between sets
  • Time or Duration:  An appropriate time as to not deter adherence (less than an hour)
  • Type or Mode:  Total body (using free weights, machines, bands, balls, kettlebells, etc.)
  • Enjoyment!


  • Frequency:  2 – 3 days a week minimum, but every day is recommended
  • Intensity:  The stretch should push to mild discomfort but should not generate pain
  • Time or Duration:  This depends on the type of stretching.  For static stretches, 15-60 second holds.  For PNF (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) stretching, the isometric stretch should be held for 6 seconds, followed by a 10-30 second static stretch, and repeated 4 times.
  • Type or Mode:  Pre-Exercise requires dynamic stretching with optional static stretches that are held for less than 10 seconds.  Post-Exercise requires static stretching or PNF stretching for the recommended times above.
  • Enjoyment!

More to come on the different types of stretching later!

Question of the Day:  What do you guys think?  Do you get the recommended amount of cardiovascular, strength, and flexibility exercise in each week? 

If not, DanceFIT Studio would be a great place to start!  Click here to see how you can win a FREE class – my drawing ends at midnight tonight!