As much as every fitness page, blog or magazine reiterates the exhilarating after-effects of an intense workout, more often than not, at the end of the day, hauling ourselves off to the nearest gym to work up a sweat might make us groan in dread on some days. Boredom is a major motivation killer when it comes to exercise, and nothing helps creep in boredom faster than doing the same thing every day.
Here are a few things you can do to attack every workout with a strong sense of purpose. It will not only help in making your workouts interesting, but will also make you feel more in control of what you are doing in the gym. Also, incorporate these mantras, to set the momentum for healthier choices when you are outside the gym.
Plan to Fit in Variety on a Weekly Basis
Putting in a few minutes to think about your exercise routine and nutritional requirements for the entire week, would go a long way in helping you do more in less time. It is much easier to take care of a task when it is clearly defined in your head. Instead of walking into the gym thinking, “I will just run on the treadmill for a bit and then maybe hit the weight section later,” it is better to have separate days or timing for strength training and cardio. You can even dedicate a couple of active rest days every week to a walk-in group pilates or yoga class to help you recover faster.
Use the Power of Music to your Advantage
A stressful or hectic day can leave you far too drained to think about any kind of movement. However sometimes, all you need to switch your mood is good music. According to studies published in, International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology, one’s favorite music can elevate their mood enough to change their perception towards their own effort. It helps one endure waves of exhaustion for a longer period, rather than quit at the first sign of sweat. In case your gym’s sound system is not very encouraging, keep your iPod close and your playlist updated.
Give Yourself a Number and then Work towards it
Whether you are trying to pin down the minimum number of days, you would like to see yourself go to the gym or the total number of hours of cardio you should be doing per week. Whether you want to improve the time within which you can run a mile, the number of pushups you can do in a minute or the amount of weight you will lose in 12 weeks. Always break down your goals into a series of reasonable and attainable numbers that will keep you engaged in your workout routine.
When All Else Fails, Just Do a Quick Circuit
The beauty of circuit training is that it can help burn calories through a bunch of seemingly simple and fundamental exercises. A body weight squat, plank hold, push ups and jumping jacks can be combined into a simple body weight circuit that you can do anywhere in just ten minutes.
Every time you find yourself running short of time, do a quick circuit at the gym or go completely equipment free in the comfort of your room with body weight movements. You will move much faster between the exercises and the sense of accomplishment that comes with finishing a tough workou, will leave you feeling great!
Longer Workouts Need Not Mean Better Workouts
A sixty-minute boot camp class might appear daunting, but there are several more subtle ways to intensify your workouts to ensure continuous progress in both performance and aesthetic appeal.
If you do not want to do anything new, simply try to finish your usual workouts faster. This could mean improving the time during which you burn 300 calories on the treadmill or saving five minutes on the clock to cover your entire strength training routine.
A sample circuit would go like this; Jump squat – 5 repetitions, decline push ups – 5 repetitions, Burpees – 5 repetitions. Repeat circuit five times.
An advanced fat loss technique would be to replace some boring cardio with more efficient dumbbell and barbell complexes. The following videos demonstrate these workouts in detail.
Beginner Dumbbell Complex
Barbell Complexes for Fat loss