3 Things You Can Do to Improve Your Workouts
If you have made the commitment of following a regular fitness plan, chances are like most fitness fanatics, you are always looking for ways to improve your workouts. This may include habits like sneaking in a quick fix on the treadmill during your lunch break, going for the stairs instead of the elevator every chance you get, investing in new gear or a Class Pass, and so on. But, did you know that there are actually far simpler and cheaper ways to improve workouts?
Let's look at 3 easy-to-implement tricks that will help you see better and faster workout results.
1. Include Variety in Your Workouts
One of the best ways to improve workouts is to include variety in your exercise sessions. Sticking to the same workout routines will see your body adjust to the regular stress level and thereby bring exercise benefits to a screeching halt. Mixing things up however continuously challenges the body thereby ensuring consistent all-rounded results.
When it comes to keeping workouts varied, there are plenty of options. You could go for High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), follow a cardio exercise with strength training, change up your routines every few weeks, focus on the upper body during one workout session and then work the lower body during the next, just to name a few. The trick is to ensure that your workout plan incorporates everything from cardio, to muscle strengthening, to stretching, to flexibility training, to balance exercises.
2. Aim for Failure with Reps
An effective trick for improving workouts is to train to failure during exercises that require repetitive moves (e.g., pushups, planks, and weightlifting routines). This means you'll be doing exercise reps until the working muscle becomes so spent that it cannot complete one more repetition while maintaining proper form.
The upside to exercising to failure is that it boosts the effectiveness of your workouts which lets you burn more calories as well as build more strength and muscle mass than you would while doing 2-3 sets of a workout routine every session (yay!). To top it off, exercising to failure also helps keep the workout intensity well within your body’s limits, therefore reducing your risk of injury.
3. Eat Right
Your diet and exercise go hand-in-hand. You need great nutrition to support your body when it's working hard! While hitting more miles on the treadmill or doing as many reps as possible during workouts, the food you eat also plays a huge role in aiding or jeopardizing your fitness. So, if you want to get the most out of your workouts, you need to be careful about what you put into your body and when you eat.
Make sure you get some protein into your body after each workout. Whether in the form of a protein bar, protein shake, or a simple protein-rich meal, getting some protein into your system after a workout offers great benefits. Try to eat within 30-40 minutes post-workout. Protein increases muscle-building potential, reduces muscle soreness by healing the micro tears that occurred during intense workouts, and significantly cuts recovery time.
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