You might not realize just how much your breathing effects your workouts. The truth, according to experts at Shape magazine, is that how you breathe can change the way you exercise, but it can also give you more energy. Sounds pretty great to me. The trouble is that changing how you breathe is no easy task. I’ve gathered all the best tips here so go ahead and give them all a try to find which one works best for you. Here’s to better days and better workouts!
1. Heavy Lifting Requires Special Breathing
If you do weight lifting, it takes a special kind of breathing to make sure you’re getting the most out of your workout. Inhale as you lift the weight, then close off your airway as you hoist the weight. This works to stabilize your core muscles and help prevent the risk of injury to your back. Practice with light weights until you’re totally comfortable with this change before you use it with heavy lifting.
2. Resist the Inhale with Resistance Bands
This is a specific breathing move that can help you get more control over your breathing so that you can regulate it perfectly during your workouts. Start by standing with your feet at hip width with a lightweight resistance band wrapped around your ribs, the ends in your hands. As you inhale, try to expand the band. Exhale to finish the move. Repeat 15 to 20 times.
3. Do Long Exhales when You Sprint
Sprinting is a great form of exercise. It burns calories and tones the muscles in your lower body. There’s a great way to breathe so that you can burn the most calories and keep yourself from totally gasping for breath the whole time. As you accelerate during your sprint, inhale. Then exhale for 4 seconds, consistently. That’s it. Easy, right?
4. Stay Even on Typical Runs
If you’re more of a consistent runner rather than a sprinter, it’s best to keep your breathing even and steady. That means you breathe in for the same number of counts as you do when you breathe out. For example, you inhale for two counts, then exhale for two counts. Choose a number that’s comfortable for you and practice counting it out as you run.
5. Yoga Means Even Calming Breaths
When you do yoga, the idea is to burn some calories and tone your muscles while also calming your mind and relaxing to reduce stress. That means you have to keep your breathing even. You want your inhales and exhales to match in terms of length, which encourages your body to unwind as it calms your central nervous system.
6. When You Lightweight Lifting You Need an Inhale, Exhale Pattern
Lighter lifting is a bit different from heavy lifting. When you do your less effort days, you need a pattern that goes like this: inhale as you lift the weight, exhale as you hoist it, inhale as you lower the weight. This helps you use your energy efficiently so that you get everything you can from the session.
7. Practice in Front of a Mirror until You Get It Figured out
Like I said before, changing your breathing isn’t always super easy. If you stand in front of the mirror and watch your body as you practice, you can see where you need to make changes as well as being able to see what works. This way, you have the tools you need to do it right as you exercise. You can do that, can’t you?
Do you have trouble with breathing during exercise? Will you be trying any of these tips next time?