Often times, the structure of a workout can get overlooked by factors like intensity and duration. But if you really want to make every single minute in the gym count, you need to go in with a plan.

Unfortunately, there is no one size fits all option for the perfect workout regime. How you choose to organize your training routine depends on what you want to accomplish. However, there are some general rules that make creating your personal workout plan a little easier.

Always start with a non-fatiguing dynamic warm-up to give your muscles the boost they need to start strong and help prevent injuries. This type of warm-up usually involves exercises like walking lunges, leg swings, arm circles, hip circles, hip raises and high knees.

If you are strength training, you should start with 3-5 minutes of low to moderately-intense cardio. This could be as easy as cycling, jogging on the treadmill or hitting up the rower. Any more than 5 minutes is just eating up precious time you should be dedicating to your main workout.

If you’re looking to build endurance, start with your main cardio routine and finish with core/stability training. If you really want to add strength training into your otherwise cardio-based regime, try to schedule strength training on the days you’re not planning on doing your usual cardio routine and weight train at a low to medium-intensity.

Start your strength training workout with multi-joint or “compound” exercises (e.g. deadlifts, squats and pull-ups) before any single-joint exercises (e.g. bicep curl, leg extensions or lateral raises). Since compound movements work multiple muscle groups at the same time to improve balance coordination, they usually require more technique, focus and energy.

Save abs and core work for the end of your workout. Since compound movements are already going to use your core for stability and balance, you want to avoid tiring out your torso with ab specific work before you begin strength training.

Working with free weights requires more stability, strategy and form to ensure that you are getting the full benefit of each movement. That’s why it’s always a good idea to do free-weight work before you hop on the machines and tire out all your supporting muscle groups.

Next time you hit up the gym for a quick sweat sesh, keep these tips in mind and design a workout routine unique to your personal fitness goals.