Ok guys, today we’re going to depart from the usual narrative post and jump into more of an instructive principle aspect regarding “The Spice of Life” Variety! So many people lose motivation and foresight in their workout/diet plans because they go to the gym, track, kitchen, for a month doing the same thing and get bored. They’re not seeing results and the monotony of doing the same thing day in and day out to no avail dissuades them from continuing and achieving their goals. That’s where variety comes in! Not only does changing up a workout routine keep things fresh, it is paramount to seeing results in whatever endeavor your undertaking. That’s where we’re going to delve into now…
When you change up your workout routine be it anaerobic(weight lifting) or aerobic(running), you’re shocking your system and forcing it to adapt to the new environment it has been thrust into! So lets apply this concept. Let’s say in the morning you start your day off with a 3 mile run, proceed through your day, and in the evening you go to the gym and do 3 sets of 4 different weighted exercises. (Obviously, this also applies to any sort and amount of physical activity you undertake.) You do this everyday for two months. During this time your body is adapting to this routine. Every time you wake up, run, come home, lift, your body is learning and solidifying these actions into it’s muscle memory. In turn, your body is learning how to do these actions more efficiently and with less stress to your body. To gain fitness, you WANT to STRESS your body, that’s how you grow and improve. If you do the same thing day in and day out, you will see results, but these results WILL NOT be your full potential. Leaving you looking like this…
Instead of.. Clickforsource
Yes the 2005 BMW 300 is a nice vehicle to have, but the 2012 is a heck of a lot sexier to be seen in! The same goes for your body. So change it up! This concept also holds as much significance for your diet. If you put the same food everyday into your body, your body will process this food more efficiently every time. This is ok if your just trying to maintain your current level of body fat, but like so many of us who are trying to lose that stubborn body fat we need to have variety in our diet to keep our bodies burning through the food we eat and into the stored energy we hold. AKA: Body Fat. Below I’ve put together some routines and ideas to help you spice up your workouts and keep your body guessing and sharp!
If your bread and butter run is a controlled out and back time or distance, try doing a Fartlik or “Speed play” in Swedish. On your run pick an object ahead and sprint to it. Once the object has been reached continue your normal pace. Repeat. This can be done for a whole run or 5 minutes depending on what you want to do.
Speed work is awesome and my preferred medium for changing up my runs. If you have access to a track, try doing a workout called a 4-3-2-1. Run 400 meter(one lap). Take a full rest. Run 300 meters. Rest. Run 200 meters. Rest. Finally, run the last 100 meters and your done! This workout should be done at maximum effort and is a great way to torch body fat, tone, and create muscle growth. Muscle growth from cardio? Crazy, right!
Weights: Ladies if you want to look like Adriana Lima…lift weights!
This girl is ripped! Clickforsource
The best way to confuse your muscles with variety is to do different exercises. Change up exercises for each workout you hit the same muscle group. So, if you lift chest and triceps on Monday, next Monday when you do chest and triceps do some different exercises that work that same muscle group, the chest and the triceps. This type of variety can be as simple as changing the angle and speed of your lift. Easy enough. Next, be sure to change up the number of reps and the number of sets you do. I recommend changing up the rep and set count once for each muscle group, after you workout that muscle group 3-4 times. So, if your doing a high amount of reps(30-15) with light weight because you want to get cut and toned, do a low amount of reps with heavy weight every 3-4 workouts. Inversely, if your doing a low amount of reps(12-1) with heavy weight because you want to put on mass, do a high amount of reps with low weight every 3-4 workouts. Notice I said change up the rep and set count every 3-4 workouts, not exercises.
I hope this helped everyone to understand the importance of shocking your body with variety in order to gain the full potential of fitness you are capable of achieving. Although you will get results doing the same thing, why settle for just enough? Don’t go through the motions. Take an active role in your life to make it the BEST. Don’t be the annoying backseat driver in your own life. Man up, Woman up, and take the wheel. Be sure to check in for a surprise post coming up in which I change things up and bring some variety to Candy Crazed Run!
What do you do to change things up not just in your workout, but also in your life?
Are you primarily an aerobic or anaerobic athlete? Tip- Try swimming, it is highly aerobic AND highly anaerobic!
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My name is Anne, I am a "Young Professional" working in Finance.
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DisclaimerI am not a registered dietician nor certified fitness professional. My goal is to share my views on living a healthy life to the fullest and learn a few things along the way. Please consult a professional for a personalized consult.