Ever feel like you’re running on the hamster wheel with your workouts? Whether you aren’t seeing the results you hoped for, are bored of your workouts, or just don’t have the energy to get the job done, there are ways to improve your workouts to make them more effective.
Maximize your time at boot camp with these helpful strategies.
Get in Gear
Your performance suffers and your risk for injury increases when you exercise without the right equipment. One of the best investments you can make for fitness success is a good pair of shoes. Purchase shoes specifically designed for the shape of your foot and for the physical activity that you are taking part in. Without well-fitted, supportive shoes, your feet, knees, and back are prone to injury.
Another good piece of gear is gloves for your hands. Even at boot camp we utilize dumbbells and kettlebells, along with battle ropes. If your hands aren’t used to that sort of material and movement you may experience discomfort. A good pair of workout gloves are perfect to protect your hands from any discomfort from equipment.
You won’t get as much out of your workouts when you run on empty. Your body needs energy and hydration for exercise and recovery afterwards. Fuel your body an hour or two before your workout and within a half hour after with healthy carbs, lean protein, and plenty of water.
You may think that if you workout in the morning that this doesn’t apply to you, but it still does! Working out on an empty stomach can actually be bad for your body. See, when your body doesn’t have food to burn off as fuel it uses the fat and muscle stored in your body. Yes, we want you to burn fat, but not the muscle, that can be unhealthy.
Exercise scientists have shown that when it comes to exercise, more isn’t always better. Exercising too much too often can backfire and lead to burnout, injury, or excuses to eat unhealthily. Aim to get half an hour of moderate intensity exercise on most days of the week for best results. That’s why we always keep our workouts to 30 minutes at boot camp, it targets the fat and doesn’t do harm to your body by pushing it too hard for too long.
Change Things Up
Running day in and day out on the treadmill can be boring, and it may not help you reach your fitness goals. Lifting weights and working the same muscles every day may lead to injury and won’t give your muscles time to heal and grow. So, rather than doing the same workout everyday, incorporate several different exercises in your weekly routine. A balanced fitness program will include cardio, strength training, and flexibility exercises.
Improve your workout by making it more enjoyable. What excites you? If it’s your favorite music, create a playlist to listen to; if it’s being with people, work out with your best friend or join an exercise class. When you enjoy your workout you’ll be more likely to stick with it. At FBBC we create a culture of mutual motivation among our family members, and it makes working out a fun experience for everyone involved.
Track Your Progress
It’s no wonder you feel like quitting if you aren’t seeing the results you hoped for, but don’t give up. Sometimes it takes more time than you planned. Other times the results are hard to measure. One way to stay motivated is to track your progress with a fitness journal or smart phone app.
At regular intervals (daily or weekly), record whatever you’re trying improve, whether it’s your weight, body measurements, strength capabilities, distance run, heart rate, blood pressure, or blood sugar levels. Keeping a journal or utilizing fitness apps is a great way to track progress and stay motivated.
As you begin a new exercise program or continue what you’ve been doing, it’s important to set goals that are realistic and attainable. While you wish you could, it’s not possible to safely lose 20 pounds in a week. In 10 weeks, with diet and exercise, however, it is very possible.
Also, stay realistic in your abilities. If you’re not strong, athletic, or in shape, it’s going to take a while to get there, so don’t expect immediate results. Stick to boot camp and you’ll gradually see the pounds come off, the muscle gained, and your health improved.