Working out every day is great, but if you're repeating the same workout, you may not be getting all of the benefits - or results - you could be!
The Truth: To continue to challenge your body and improve your strength and conditioning, you need to switch up your day-to-day workouts — and try something new each month.
When it comes to fitness, it’s so easy to fall into a routine. You might get wrapped up in doing classes or pounding the treadmill or cross- trainer— and start doing just those types of workouts all the time. Believe me, this will leave you disappointed and could lead to injury or muscle imbalances. If you want to get stronger and continue to challenge your muscles, you’ll need to switch up your workouts on a regular basis!
Your body adapts to any type of exercise. The first time you go run a mile, it is probably going to be tough. But by the 40th time you run a mile, it’s a lot easier, right? As you get used to a type of exercise, it becomes less challenging and, as a result, less effective. That’s why it’s essential to mix it up. This might mean alternating the amount of weight you lift — go heavy one week with fewer reps and lighter the next with more reps. Change the type of exercise you do for each muscle. One week, do push-ups, then chest flies, then chest presses. They all work the same part of your body, but in very different ways.
Follow a split routine to change up your workouts on a day-to-day basis. A split routine focuses on different muscle groups during different workouts. This is a great way to not only prevent over-training but will also aid achieve maximum calorie burn if the structure of your program and intensity is right for you and your training goals. A split routine trains muscles based on their functions and relations to other muscles. One way to split your strength training routine is to focus on muscles on the front of your body one day, and the muscles on the back of your body the next. You should always train your lower body — no matter which split day you’re on — because it is the most effective way to elevate your heart rate and burn calories. Always remember to train your muscles from largest to smallest to prevent fatigue. Another way is to focus on one or two muscles groups per training session depending on how many days you are committing to train.
Cardio days need variation too! Most people like to stick to one machine for cardio, but I want you to change your mindset. To reach your fitness goals, you have to let go of that “all-or-nothing” mentality. And let's face it — eventually, you'll need more than one cardio option. One day, the weather may be too bad for your usual outdoor run, or all the cross trainers will be taken in the gym. Vary what you do, be flexible. If you only have a treadmill to work with, you can still switch up your workout by performing run-jog intervals in intermittent bursts, or walking on an incline. Try out some different fitness classes or speak to a qualified trainer about bringing in some new training methods or exercises. There are countless ways to consider changing your workout from week to week, you just have to commit to making it happen.
The Bottom Line: To challenge and strengthen your body, you’ll need to change up your workouts! Try different forms of cardio, follow split routines, or simply switch up the weight you’re lifting and the repetitions.
Member since: 16th February 2016
Jon Morgan is a fitness expert and transformation specialist from Eastbourne ( East Sussex, UK ). Having worked with professional athletes and everyday people Jon uses his innovative techniques, education...