May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month and what better time to focus on being active and becoming a healthier you! If you’re considering significant lifestyle changes, consider these 10 simple fitness tips.
1. Value Variety
· If you only perform the same exercises and don’t require anything new from your body, it will eventually adapt to even the hardest physical demands.
· Try to add variety to your workouts.
· Try increasing reps while using lighter weights or doing fewer reps with heavy weights.
· Commit to trying one new exercise every few weeks or exercising in different environments, such as a gym, outdoors and a yoga studio.
2. Turn on the Tunes
· If you typically exercise in silence and find yourself counting down the minutes left, you may want to divert your attention from your muscles to your ears.
· Music boosts energy levels, motivation and exertion during repetitive endurance activities.
3. Drink Up!
· For your body to perform at a high level, it’s essential to stay hydrated.
· Keep a water bottle nearby throughout the day.
· Recommended amount: About 15.5 cups of fluids for men and about 11.5 cups of fluids a day for women. 1
4. Don’t Skimp on Carbs
· Carbohydrates are the main fuel source for your muscles, brain and body, and going too low can cause energy drain and fatigue.
· The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that carbohydrates make up 45 to 65 percent of your total daily calories.
· Choose vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and low fat dairy as sources of carbohydrates. Limit foods with added sugars and refined grains, such as sugary drinks, desserts and candy, which are packed with calories but low in nutrition.
5. Go for Intense Bursts
· Add fun to your workout routine without adding time, try high-intensity interval training (HIIT).
· You can incorporate HIIT anywhere, you don’t even need any equipment.
· Try sprinting, jumping rope or any other activity you can perform for one to three minutes intensely, then stop and let your heart rate lower somewhat for two minutes. For an intense workout, repeat these three to four times.
6. Add Resistance
· People tend to underestimate the value of strength training for fat loss.
· The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends that adults do strengthening exercises, such as lifting weight, pushups and sit-ups, at least two days per week.
7. Focus on Fun
· The biggest key to preventing exercise burnout from boredom is seeking activities you find pleasurable. The more you enjoy something, the more you’re going to do it.
8. Monitor Your Intensity
· Start slow and work your way up to challenging yourself more and more each day.
· Particularly in the beginning stages of fitness, ease your way in to prevent pushing yourself too hard – which can lead to soreness, injuries and losing interest in exercise.
9. Keep a Journal
· Tracking your exercise sessions in a journal can enhance your success by holding you accountable and keeping you motivated.
· If you’re also working on improving your eating habits, record your food intake as well.
10. Plan and Commit
· The old adage that “failing to plan means planning to fail” can easily hold true regarding exercise. Commit to a lifestyle change.
As always, visit qualchoice.com for more information.