Archive for May, 2016

10 Fitness Ideas to Amp Up Your Workout

May 13th, 2016 No comments

Running out of workout ideas? Staying fit isn’t easy, especially if you are losing motivation due to a dull routine. But don’t worry, it happens to everyone. The best thing you can do when boredom begins is to amp up your workout with these fun and effective ideas.

1.      Step away from the machine

Structured and easy to use resistance machines can be pretty alluring. They have instructions and control your movements to make sure you are doing them correctly, but according to McKinley Health Center, free weights have more physical benefits.

  • Allow full range of motion
  • Target multiple muscle groups at once
  • Improve coordination and control
  • More challenging
  • More adaptable

2.      Focus on flexibility

Although you might be focused on increasing your speed, reps or overall strength, don’t forget the importance of flexibility. Harvard Health Publications emphasizes flexibility is key to your workout.

  • helps with balance
  • prevents back pain
  • prevents injuries
  • allows full range of motion

Just make sure to stretch after your workout, not before.

3.      Incorporate yoga

For some reason, women tend to gravitate to yoga classes, but this calming practice is something everyone should try.

  • improves flexibility
  • enhances balance
  • helps manage weight

Studies show people who practice yoga just once a week can lose five pounds over 10 years. Imagine if you practiced in a bit more or combined it with your cardio. Sign up for a class or check out some free yoga videos on YouTube to gain the benefits of yoga for weight loss.

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4.      Interval train when you’re short on time

Studies show an intense 5-minute interval workout (10 minutes if you include the warm up and cool down) provide the same results as a 45-minute workout. All you have to do is intersperse three 20 second bursts of energy with two, two-minute periods of moderate activity. If you are short on time, this is a good way to get your workout in for the day.

5.      Join a group

If you have the willpower, working out alone has its advantage, but research shows strong advantages for group exercise.

  • Working out with others creates accountability
  • It can create motivation through competition
  • There’s an added social benefit
  • It raises endorphins more than working out alone

6.      Get massages

Sports teams pay big money for professional massage therapists for a reason. Studies show massage can decrease your recovery time to get you back on your game, fast. One study found that a short, 10-minute Swedish massage right after working out reduced inflammation to help heal muscles. Of course, massage has other benefits as well says the American Massage Therapy Association.

  • Reduces stress
  • Treats lower back and neck pain
  • Gives joint pain relief
  • Improves sleep
  • Enhances range of motion

7.      Vary your rep speed

Many amateurs just start off lifting at a normal speed, but how you do your reps really can make a difference. One study showed that slow reps resulted in a 50 percent increase in strength than when they were done quickly, so there’s no need to rush through. You should vary the speed, and even pause to hold the weights to increase the time your muscles are under tension. The more tension, the more you’ll gain.


8.      Make a playlist to maximize your workout

Everyone has headphones dangling from their ears at the gym, and you probably like to use music to motivate you as well. It turns out there are some real benefits to choosing the right music, researchers say music really can enhance different workouts.

  • Choose rap or hip-hop when you’re stretching and running
  • Make a dance music playlist for your strength training
  • Cool down with catchy pop songs

9.      Indulge in the sauna and hot tub

Some think of these heat producers as nothing more than luxury, but they may actually boost your workout results. Animal studies showed heat chambers improved muscle mass by 13 percent over two weeks, but now researchers also think saunas improve heart health and lead to longer lives. If you have a gym membership, you probably already have access to a hot tub or a sauna (or both) so what are you waiting for?

10. Always remember to warm up and cool down

Sometimes you might be tempted to skip your warm up or cool down, especially if you’re in a hurry, but the American Heart Association warns against missing them.

  • Warm ups improve your performance while you are working out
  • They improve flexibility and increase oxygen flow
  • They reduce stress on your heart
  • A cool down helps your body adjust, gently slowing your heart rate
  • It also prevents a rapid drop in blood pressure so you don’t feel dizzy

Now that you know how to amp up your activity, get out there and get moving.

Watch this video: Secret Tips To Find Success and Keep Motivated

About the Author

Katleen Brown is a health, beauty and fitness writer. She loves to publish her articles on various health related websites. In her spare time, likes to do research to bring awareness. Recognizing the unity of body, mind, and outlook, she helps empower women to tune into their innate & inner wisdom to transform their health and truly flourish. Get in touch with her on Google+, Pinterest and Twitter.


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