Work Smart not Hard: How to get to the next fitness level in a way that’s SAFE and SUSTAINABLE
I think we can all agree exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. However, keeping up with a high level of exercise isn’t easy. There’s overexertion, exhaustion, boredom and sometimes just not enough time in the day. Even if you are able to keep up your activity, a lot of times you aren’t able to really give it your all. When this happens, you are at a higher risk for injury, and are likely not getting as much out of your workout as you could be.
5 tips to make sure you are getting the most out of your workouts:
- Eat for fuel. It’s important to figure out what works for your body. Pay attention to which foods give you a boost in energy and which foods bog you down. Although everybody is different, making sure you get enough protein and veggies is a general rule across the board. Remember, if you are staying active, you NEED these nutrients for fuel. The better you feel, the harder you’ll work. It’s just as important to eat well after a workout. Your body needs the right nutrients to refuel.
I like to drink a protein smoothie after my workouts. My current go-to is spinach, frozen mango, vanilla plant protein powder and water.
- Drink WATER. You can always up the water, especially if you are pushing your workouts. It’s a hard habit to build, but if you can manage it, it will be worth it. Whenever I’m on my water game my energy levels stay consistent.
If I feel like switching it up (cause let’s be honest water can get boring) I add a squeeze of lemon. Emergen-C packets can help boost energy too!
- Cross train. This helps you stay active without overworking a specific muscle group or area of the body, and also gives your mind a chance to try something new. When you stick to the same workout, your body begins to develop a tolerance to it, which means it takes more time and more energy to achieve the same results. Cross training is also extremely important when it comes to injury prevention. A balanced workout helps develop strength overall without overexerting the same muscles every time. Tired muscles can easily lead to torn muscles if you aren’t careful.
That’s why I love Body by Simone! There is an element of cross training within it, since it uses both strength training and cardio in one workout. When I’m not working at BBS, I like to switch it up even more. A dance class, hike or cycling class help to keep me active on my days off without feeling burnt out.
- Stretch and roll. Stretching is extremely important for mobility and injury prevention. When a muscle group is too tight, it puts an extra strain on the muscle itself as well as surrounding tendons and joints. This can limit your range of motion. Rolling out your muscles with a foam roller or tennis ball is a great way to alleviate pain and tightness within the body. Stretching and rolling out regularly allows space between your joints, improves alignment and helps create long lean, dancer-like muscles.
Don’t forget to roll out the bottom of your feet! They hold much more tension than we realize and can sometimes be the root cause of muscle pain that has traveled to other parts of your body.
- Use your time wisely. Would a nap do more for your body than a run? (Not always! Be honest.) Consistency when working out is important but sometimes taking the time to relax or indulge is what you need to rejuvenate your mind body and soul. That break will give you the boost you need to stay focused and energized when you get back to your workout.
The bottom line is, listen to your body. Fuel it up right and be gentle with it when it’s feeling strained. Ask yourself which workout you can give your all to right now. By really listening, you are allowing yourself to give it your all every time, ultimately burning more calories and strengthening your muscles in a way that is safe and sustainable.
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