2023 Fitness Routines Prioritized Strength, Recovery


The data doesn’t lie: Fitness routines are shifting.

Tracking the Trends

Year-end data from WHOOP and Tonal revealed lifestyle changes promoting strength, longevity, and recovery among users.

Recovery over everything. WHOOP users went big on R&R, with the majority drinking less alcohol while adding ice baths, creatine supplementation, and red light therapy.

Wanting to feel good above all, Tonal users skipped leg workouts to avoid muscle soreness.

Lifestyle medicine. Exercisers are now longevity-seekers.

  • The average age for the top 1% of WHOOP Strain activity loggers was 45.
  • 37% of Tonal users said they use the device to live a longer, healthier life.
  • Older Tonal members are 12% more consistent than younger cohorts.

Focusing on holistic health, users are recognizing that improved healthspan doesn’t stem from a single act.

Prioritizing better sleep, users benefited from consistent wake and rest times. Not as obvious, seeking direct sunlight upon waking and eating exclusively during daylight hours improved shut-eye.

Investing in daily movement, exercisers who worked out around the same time each day were more consistent, and those who started earlier worked out longer. Validating exercise snacks, shorter sessions (sub-20 minutes) led to more frequent workouts.

Building a base. Strength training is becoming a core to many and a complement to many more who go with what they feel on a given day. Women exercisers favor a 60:40 split between strength and other modalities like yoga, HIIT, barre, and dance-cardio.

Meanwhile, communal and outdoor exercise like pickleball, soccer, and rucking/hiking are surging as extracurriculars, with the latter two gaining 37% and 49% YoY, respectively.

Punchline: Exercisers want more from themselves, and whether that’s putting new wisdom to practice or going back to the basics, well-being remains tied to self-discovery.

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