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15 Ways You Can Revitalize Your Gym Workout

15 Ways You Can Revitalize Your Gym Workout

Have you ever started to workout and then simply given up? If you have, you are not alone. Many people start to exercise and then get bored and stuck in a rut. But there are many simple things you can do to prevent getting bored with your training. Here are 15 possibilities for you to try.

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    1. Hire a personal trainer

    Before I worked as a personal trainer, I used to do the same workout week in and week out, and guess what? I was bored. Very bored. I didn’t know how to train with free weights and felt very intimidated being in the gym. A personal trainer can teach you new exercises and track your progress so you gain fantastic results and feel super confident in the gym.

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      2. Work out with a friend

      Finding a close friend to train with at the gym is great as it keeps you on-track with your training. I have a friend I train with and it works out well as we push each other and help each other where necessary. You have to be more accountable; you can no longer skip your exercise sessions. And, of course, it is more fun!

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        3. Have realistic goals

        It is really important to have goals that are realistic and you are motivated by. A mistake some people make is to set completely unachievable goals, which of course is very demotivating. It is much better to set goals with a bit of cushioning so you feel you are not under too much pressure to achieve them. This way you are more likely to stick at your workouts. Write your goals down and keep them in a visible place.

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          4. Track your progress

          Once you’ve set your goals, it is just as important to track the progress you are making towards them, otherwise you are highly unlikely to meet them. One way to track your progress would be to take progress photos of your body. That is a very motivating way to keep you on track. Also, take note of what you can manage during your workouts. Monthly time periods are a good measure to look back on when tracking progress.

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            5. Learn some new exercises

            It is important to keep your workouts fresh and exciting. You can achieve this by learning new exercises each month that you can incorporate into your training.

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              6. Vary your workout routine

              Vary your workout routine every time to keep from getting bored. You can vary your workout by changing the exercises, the number of reps, the tempo, or the rest periods in between sets. This keeps your workouts exciting and fresh. Don’t be scared to try new pieces of equipment either. If unsure how to use them, ask a personal trainer for some help. Most gyms have kettlebells, swiss balls, TRX, and cable machines. Explore new ways of training.

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                7. Listen to music while working out

                Having your favorite playlist with you while you train is highly energizing and can encourage you to train harder too. You can use Spotify to create specific playlists for the gym. It is good to keep updating your music as you will get bored really quickly, and you don’t want to get bored while running on the treadmill or planking it!

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                  8. Listen to your body

                  You really want to focus on enjoying your training, so if you feel completely exhausted after a very stressful day at work it probably isn’t sensible to have a high-intensity exercise session. In that case you could do some qi gong, t’ai chi, or some gentle stretching instead. Listen to your body. If you are forcing yourself to exercise when you really don’t feel like it you will start to resent your sessions. Do what is right for your body.

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                    9. Challenge yourself

                    Try to push yourself during every single workout; make it count. That way you are getting fitter and you are not wasting time. If you have been training for a while, try to push yourself to a 70 to 80% exertion level. Pushing yourself doesn’t mean training in a frantic way, that is ridiculous. If you are training over 80% of your exertion level you can get injured. As you get fitter from challenging yourself, you will be hooked on your exercise.

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                      10. Train when you have the most energy

                      If you want to keep your exercise sessions interesting and fresh, it makes sense to train at the time of day when you have the most energy. If you are training late at night after a long day at the office it’s too easy to skip your exercise.

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                        11. Have at least one rest day a week

                        It’s important to have one rest day a week from your exercise regime. On this day try to rest as much as you can. This helps your muscles recover from the week and recharges you for the following week.

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                          12. Train consistently

                          One way to get fed up with the gym is to constantly stop and start your training. You need to be committed to training at least three times a week to see the very best results. That way it becomes part of ‘what you do’ and you keep motivated by achieving your goals.

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                            13. Train rationally

                            Approaching your exercise sessions in a rational, sensible way is ideal as you don’t get bogged down with being overly emotional or sensitive about reaching your goals. If you can view achieving your fitness goals like a work project, you are more likely to stick at it.

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                              14. Look to the long term

                              Keep in your mind the long-term benefits of exercise. Everyone needs to train to stay healthy, it isn’t an option. You want to reach older age and be in good physical shape.

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                                15. Give yourself a break

                                Try and be easy on yourself if things don’t quite work out exactly as you had hoped. Instead of looking at what you didn’t achieve during a workout, focus on what you have achieved. As long as you are doing everything you can and are getting fitter, that is the main thing. Avoid comparing yourself to other people, including celebrities. Try to foster a nurturing attitude and look after yourself.

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                                Last Updated on August 15, 2018

                                7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

                                7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

                                Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

                                Video Summary

                                Why is it important to train up our core strength?

                                There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

                                This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

                                Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

                                In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

                                One Exercise, multiple benefits

                                There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

                                By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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                                When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

                                Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

                                In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

                                What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

                                What will happen when you start doing planks every day

                                  1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

                                  Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

                                  • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
                                  • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
                                  • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
                                  • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

                                  2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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                                    Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

                                    Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

                                    3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

                                      Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

                                      4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

                                        Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

                                        A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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                                        A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

                                        On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

                                        5. You’ll improve overall balance

                                          Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

                                          6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

                                            Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

                                            7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                                              Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                                              How to hold a plank position

                                              1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                                              2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                                              3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                                              4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                                              5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                                              6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                                              7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                                              Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                                              Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                                                How to improve your plank time gradually

                                                1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                                                2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                                                3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                                                Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                                                Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                                                You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                                                • Prolapse
                                                • After prolapse surgery
                                                • Pelvic pain conditions
                                                • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                                                • Previous childbirth
                                                • Overweight

                                                Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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