Supercharge your Workout

We’re almost halfway through 2021 and it’s a perfect time to reassess our workouts. With the warmer weather, many of us are motivated to carve out even more time for fitness and make our workout sessions more effective. While the intention to focus on your workouts is great, good fitness habits are the foundation that makes our workout and health goals achievable. These five healthy habits will help you get the most out of every session.

1. Show up!

Consistency in your workouts is a must and is the key to achieving your goals. Your workout is an appointment you make with yourself that you don’t cancel. Schedule your workouts in your calendar and make them a priority. This means you fit in other appointments—such as dentist, nails, hair, and car repair—around your workout. Workouts don’t get bumped. You don’t skip brushing your teeth and in the same vein, you don’t skip your scheduled workout. Your scheduled workout is your mind- and body-enhancing system that keeps you tuned up.

2. Warm-up!

When you start your workout, it’s time to move, not stretch! A good dynamic10-minute warm-up is a must, especially as we get older. Warming up consists of dynamic movements such as walking, biking, sidestepping, light jogging, knee raises, stepping, reaching, lunging, and squatting. Your warm-up is a light introduction to the movements and incorporates all the same muscles you plan to use for your workout. The length of your warm-up will depend on how intensely you plan to exercise. Generally, the more intensely you plan to exercise the longer you will want your warm-up to be. Getting your body warmed up before exercising will drastically improve your workout session. Warming up gradually increases your body’s core temperature, expands arteries, increases blood flow, and loosens up your muscles. Most importantly, it energizes and pre-pares you for the workout ahead by increasing oxygen flow throughout your body. I find picking a couple of my favorite workout tunes gets me even more motivated for the workout ahead.

3. Plan!

Know what you’re going to do before you get to the gym. Is today a total-body strength workout? A cardio workout? Leg day? Before you step into the gym, know what your workout routine will be. It’s a good idea to write out your routine and plan for alternatives if a particular machine or workout station is not available.

5 Habits that'll supercharge

4. Get breathless!

Even if your workout is strength-training-based, make sure you include some breathless exercise movements. Try to add four to six one-minute breathless exercises into your workout such as high knees, jumping jacks, repeater lunges, kettlebell swings, burpees, in-cline walking, bike sprints, etc. These bursts of activity can promote a number of physiological benefits, such as increased mitochondrial density, improved stroke volume, improved oxidative that’ll supercharge your workout.5 habit capacity of muscle, and enhanced aerobic efficiency. Add these bursts of cardio activity after your warm-up, placed between sets of your strength exercises, and save one final cardio burst to finish off your workout before you cool down.

5. Add a monthly challenge to your workout routine!

5 Habits that'll supercharge

This is a fun way to get stronger, focus harder on an exercise, become even more proficient with an exercise, and gain a feeling of accomplishment once the challenge is completed. Challenges can be anything from adding 20 extra push-ups to your workouts to a booty band or challenge; or think pull-ups, daily steps goal, or plank challenge. By incorporating a challenge, you have the opportunity to add variety to your workout by including a piece of equipment you haven’t been using regularly such as a medicine ball, resistance bands, loop bands, or kettlebells. Or you can simply try a fitness class and add some of the moves you enjoyed into your workout. Alternatively, ask a fitness friend if you can follow along with their routine.

And one last great practice to add to your routine? Check-in with yourself post-workout. How do you feel? You should feel accomplished, satisfied, sweaty, and proud. These feelings help us stay motivated to make our health a priority and what we do today affects our tomorrow...

 

 

By : ROSALIE BROWN

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