Getting into a regular routine of working out is both a blessing and a curse. While it’s nice to have a well-maintained schedule or exercise routine, it can also get tiring to do the same old thing and seeing little to no results. While it’s true that going through the motions of a workout is better than no workout at all, it can still be taxing on your brain and motivation to get stuck in a cycle of monotony.
With these nine tips and tricks, you’ll be able to upgrade your workout to the next level. Dial up the intensity and kiss that boredom goodbye!
9. Combine strength and cardio
Most people think of strength workouts and cardio workouts as completely separate. Depending on your exercise of choice, that may be true, but there are plenty of ways to combine both strength and cardio into one easy workout. And there’s no better way to get beach body ready than by mixing the two!
Try this: 5 sets of 10 burpees followed by a 30-second sprint. This mini full-body workout will target your arms, core, hamstrings, quads and more!
8. Get explosive
Explosive exercises like box jumps and lateral bounds are excellent ways to build strength and speed. Bolstering those fast-twitch muscles will keep you feeling powerful and nimble day in and day out.
Try this: Incorporate three sets of 10 box jumps into your daily gym routine. Adding these to the end of your workout lets you end on a high note and ensures your muscles are prepped for the intensity of explosive exercises
7. Add weight
Rather than sticking to your regular bodyweight exercises, up the ante by adding a dumbbell, kettlebell, or weight plate.
Try this: Hold a 20 to 30-pound kettlebell at chest-level as you do your squat reps. The more explosive you are on the way up, the better!
6. Switch your sneakers
Footwear can affect your gym game if you’re not properly suited up with the right support. So while those white Nike shoes may pair well with all of your favorite leggings and tanks, you need to be sure that they’re also pairing well with your unique foot shape, arch build, and support needs.
Try this: Go to your local running shoe store to have your stride assessed. The way you walk says a lot about the type of footwear you need. Experts know best, so get their suggestions before upgrading your shoe game.
5. Train one side at a time
Unilateral exercises that force you to concentrate on building one arm or leg at a time will help you build strength faster and even out your strong side from your weak side.
Try this: Instead of reaching for a two-handed barbell when doing bicep curls, use a moderately heavy dumbbell to curl one arm at a time.
4. End with protein shakes
You’ve ended a workout feeling fatigued and sore, and while that’s a great sign that you kicked some serious gym butt, you don’t want that feeling to disrupt your workday. Drinking a protein shake after a workout helps the body heal those micro muscle tears—effectively making them stronger over time.
Try this: Blend up 1 cup of milk, 1 banana, 1 tablespoon of honey, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter, and one scoop of chocolate-flavored protein. Top it off with a dash of cinnamon and you’ve got some tasty post-workout protein at your fingertips!
3. Try something new
Sometimes the easiest way to spice up a boring gym routine is to completely revamp it. Dedicate one day a week to a new activity or class offered by your gym or recommended by a friend. You may find that AcroYoga is the perfect blend of fitness and fun for you!
Try this: Check out ClassPass to see the many active options available in your city. The free trial allows you to test out a few classes, giving you the power and freedom to feel things out.
2. Minimize rest
We get it, you’re tired and need some time to catch your breath before tackling the next exercise. Unfortunately, taking too much rest could hurt you more than help you. By minimizing the time spent catching your breath, you’ll train your body to work efficiently through fatigue and push through tough workout days.
Try this: Always schedule a recovery day and try to wait for your heart rate to drop only slightly between sets.
1. Find a gym buddy
There’s no better motivator than a gym buddy who pushes you to finish that last rep no matter how much your arms are shaking. A good gym buddy helps make the time fly by and can even correct your form or lend weight loss tips.
Try this: Find a friend or family member who has gym commitment problems and create a list of exercises you can hit them with in their time of need. That way, you’re both motivated to go and one can’t go without the other!
Hit the gym with confidence and purpose with these workout-enhancing tips!