These tips for a more successful workout may seem a bit easier than you thought possible. Usually, the simple changes we make to our health and our life are the ones that can make the biggest difference of all. Things like drinking more water and eating fewer potato chips are simple ways for us to stay healthier without changing much of our lifestyle. Likewise, these tips for a more successful workout will get you burning more calories and seeing greater results in less time, and sometimes, with less energy than you thought possible!
Completing pre-workout dynamic stretches is one of the best tips for a more successful workout that I can give. Not all stretches are created equal though. Before a workout, it is important to only complete stretches that begin to warm-up the muscles, ligaments, tendons, and blood vessels. Dynamic stretches like jumping jacks and toe touches will help increase performance and decrease the risk of injury during a workout.
2. Get a Heart Rate Monitor
The rate at which our heart pumps blood is a great indicator of how hard we are working out and what we need to do differently. Sometimes, we work our bodies beyond the point of health to increase our stamina and performance. Unfortunately, this is doing nothing for our overall health or a successful workout. Heart Rate Monitors will tell you your heart rate at any given time and will also keep that data so you can look back and see improvements. These also give a ballpark estimate of the amount of calories that we are burning per workout
3. Workout in Public
Let's just admit it, unless you are a crazy self-motivated powerhouse of awesomeness, working out at home, alone, probably does not push you the same way that working out in a class or at the gym does. Same here. That is why workout classes are a great way to up the ante and see how far our bodies can really be pushed. I like to do a difficult workout class at the beginning of the week to set the standard of what to expect the rest of the week through. This has really helped me push my physical fitness and the expectations I set on my own body throughout the week.
4. Get a Buddy
This is the same idea as working out in public, but a bit more personal. Workout buddies will push us during individual workouts and during those times that working out is the last thing we want to do, ever. When we work out with a buddy we tend to work harder and are willing to work out for longer. A harder workout that I am willing to do for longer sounds pretty successful in my book!
5. Log It
Logging daily workouts, intensity, and how you feel after is a great way to see greater improvement in your workouts over a longer period of time. Logging workouts will also push all of us to do better and work harder through any workout we do. If you are a runner, I recommend downloading the Nike+ Running app. This logs all runs, gives you trophies, and shares stats among friends.
6. Set a Goal
Goals make everything easier. Setting a workout goal of running a 5K or completing that super difficult yoga pose is a great way to push yourself past what you thought possible. Those with a goal tend to have more productive workouts that show results way faster than simply working out to lose weight. Check out the competitions and races in your local area, then, sign up for one that is scheduled in the next few months. Chances are, you will be quite surprised at how fun working out becomes when there is a goal in mind.
7. Keep a Schedule
A schedule can be something as simple as cardio on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays and doing yoga every day between. They can also be much more precise, but the important thing is to have a schedule. Without a schedule of workouts for the upcoming week, we are flying blind. A lack of a schedule can lead to last minute workouts that are no fun or, worse, no workout at all. Consistency is key to any successful workout and one of the best ways to stay consistent is to have a schedule we stick to.
Doing all of these simple workout tips is a sure way to find more success when you work out. It is also vital to know what a successful workout means to you. What is your definition of a successful workout?