Re-energize your workout and renew your commitment to staying fit
Feel like you have 1,001 reasons not to exercise? Although everyone experiences days when the motivation is just not there, if you find yourself skipping exercise more and more, you and your body may have reached an exercise plateau.
Columbia St. Mary’s Women’s Heart Secrets exercise specialist Kim Beyer explains, “Over time, if you continue to do the same workout over and over again, your body adjusts to the routine. You reach a plateau when the exercise no longer benefits your body and you become bored with your fitness routine.”
“If you’re not sweating as much as you once did or if you feel your exercise isn’t as physically challenging as it once was,” says Beyer, “you might have hit the plateau and need to increase the intensity of your activity or change it altogether.”
To get the most out of your workout and avoid boredom, many experts recommended modifying your fitness routine every two weeks. Even slight changes can benefit different muscle groups and keep you interested and having fun. For example, instead of going for your usual walk around the neighborhood, take a different route, one with more hills to make your workout a bit tougher.
In the mood to try something totally different? These popular fitness classes are sure to re-energize your workout and renew your commitment to staying fit:
If you are eager to start exercising outdoors, consider signing up for a boot camp class this spring. These challenging small group workouts are often held in public parks and are a mix of cardiovascular exercises like running or interval training and strength training using weights, resistance bands or your own body weight.
Spinning offers cardiovas-
cular conditioning for all
Spinning, an indoor group cycling class, is an excellent cardiovascular workout and is available to all levels of fitness. Some classes even incorporate upper body weight training or stretching techniques. Motivating instructors and energetic music will keep you pedaling your way to better health.
Feeling overwhelmed with your job or family life? Consider taking up yoga. This 5,000-year-old practice seeks to harmonize the mind, body and spirit through breathing techniques and physical poses. The benefits of doing yoga regularly include increased strength and flexibility, improved posture, better breathing and stress reduction.
Zumba is a Latin aerobic dance class with easy-to-follow moves, making it appropriate for all fitness levels. This dynamic workout features interval training sessions where fast and slow rhythms and resistance training are combined. Zumba aims to tone your body and burn calories while lifting your spirits.
If strength training isn’t already a part of your regular fitness routine, now is a great time to add it. Everyone should be lifting weights or doing other resistance exercises regardless of age, gender or body type. Strength training can help maintain or improve muscle mass, reduce the risk of osteoporosis, protect against injuries, control or even decrease your weight, manage chronic diseases and improve your overall sense of well being.
“Exercising should be challenging, not painful,” reminds Beyer. “And before starting any exercise program, be sure to check with your healthcare provider."
If you have any questions or would like more information about exercise, please contact Women’s Heart Secrets at (414) 291-1550 or visit www.heartsecrets.org.