Progress for Success
Is your workout program giving you the results you want? Are you seeing constant strength gains? Are you consistently meeting your weight loss goals? Do you enjoy your workouts and feel that your program improves all aspects of your life? If you answered “no” to any of these questions, it may be time to progress your workout to the “next level.”
The “next level” is different for everyone and it’s going to involve leaving your comfort zone. No one ever said success was easy. It takes effort. You will need to add some exercises that are more challenging and maybe unfamiliar to you to revive your workouts. Remember, new exercises will bring new benefits.
Want to feel the burn? Work your muscle groups. If you only do leg extensions, and hamstring curls for your legs, you are isolating one muscle group with each exercise. In reality, no muscle works in isolation. Multiple muscles work together in every human movement, from running to bending over.
Next time – try squats. A squat works all of your leg and hip muscles together as a unit. It also requires you to contract your abs, back, and other stabilizing muscles that aren’t involved when using a machine that isolates just one muscle group. Which exercise sounds more beneficial to you – a muscle isolating leg extension or a full body squat?
How about revving up your cardiovascular workouts? Do you walk, run, bike, swim, etc. for hours on end without seeing results? Raise the intensity. Start adding intervals to your workouts. Interval training involves alternating between a period of high intensity effort, and a lower intensity recovery period.
Let’s look at an example involving running. First, warm up at a moderate pace for 3-5minutes in preparation for the effort. Second, increase your speed to a level that is faster than you would normally run and maintain it for 15-60 seconds. Once this time is up, lower your speed to one that is more manageable and recover for 30-90 seconds. Repeat this process for the duration of your workout. You can manipulate the exercise and rest periods depending on your fitness level.
This type of workout brings you out of your comfort zone then gives you a chance to recover so you can get right back into the higher intensity levels. With a little practice, you will be able to maintain higher intensities for longer times and your body will start to recover more quickly.
There are many options for the exerciser who wants to improve their fitness level, regardless of age or skill level. This article is only the tip of the iceberg. Ask any of our personal trainers for suggestions on how you can progress for success.