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Health and Fitness News

Kick Things Up a Notch

Bored with your workout or not seeing results? Take your workout to the next level with this advice

Have you been doing the same workout every day for as long as you can remember? Are you getting bored with exercise or not seeing the fitness results you want? Maybe you’re a creature of habit and are stuck in a rut. Or perhaps you’ve reached a plateau in exercise, causing a stall in weight loss. If so, it may be time to talk with your trainer about tweaking your workouts.

Changing things up a little may be all it takes to enjoy exercise again and see the weight come off.

Here are a few ways to take your workouts to the next level.

Fuel Your Body

If you’re running on empty, then don’t expect your best performance. The right nutrition can go a long way in supporting your workout and speeding recovery following exercise. Two to three hours before your workout, plan to eat a nutritious meal that includes carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats. If a full meal isn’t possible, eat a snack that’s high in carbs 45 to 60 minutes before exercising. What you eat following your workout is also important. Carbohydrates will help replenish your energy stores and protein will repair damaged muscle tissue.

Listen to Music

Tired of your workouts? Make them more exciting with your favorite, upbeat music. Some beats just make you want to move your body and put you in a mood to exercise. Use headphones that won’t fall out while you workout and create a playlist filled with energizing songs.

Switch from Machines to Dumbbells

Many of the machines you’ll find in the gym are designed to work single muscles at a time. These isolation exercises have a place in fitness, but aren’t meant to burn many calories or provide quick results. Instead of using the machines, switch to dumbbells or the barbell for compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups at a time.

Add HIIT

You may not see the fitness results you desire if you exercise at the same intensity your whole workout. Incorporate high intensity interval training (HIIT) into your workout to kick things up a notch. By alternating between low- and high-intensity exercise, you’re able to burn more calories, increase the duration of your workout, and boost your metabolism throughout the day. HIIT can be done by alternating between faster and slower exercise, adding hills, or increasing resistance.

Do More

When your workouts aren’t helping you reach your goals, take it as a sign you need to do more. So add a few minutes to your workout. Add in another day of exercise each week. Pick up the pace of your walk or jog. Include hills or increase the incline on your treadmill. Increase the resistance on your stationary bicycle. Or add more weight to your strength training routine.

Cross Train

Doing the same exercise every time you workout is good for your health, but it may not provide the results you’re looking for. Your muscles will get to the point they’re no longer challenged. Cross training forces you to switch things up and alternate between a variety of workouts. Tuesdays and Thursdays may be your strength training days. One day you work on upper body strength and the other day you focus on lower body. Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays may be your cardio. Activities may include taking a spin class, playing a game of tennis, jogging, or swimming laps at the gym. Just switch it up and watch your body respond in kind.