18 Ways to accentuate your workout for weight loss : Let’s be real, no matter how much they say it’s possible, losing weight is really difficult. Yes, you might have been paying for a gym subscription for a while now, but many of us are unlikely to notice any significant results straight away. Well, that’s because it’s the little things in between that matter the most. Vivotion have shared with us some of the ways that you can be making the most out of each workout session:
Work for it
Many of us believe that fitness enthusiasts workout faster because they’re better. However that’s not the case, it’s simply due to the fact they focus more on the intensity of their workout. Stop worrying about your heart rate and push yourself to do more. Remember, if you don’t feel challenged at all and you can still step it up, then go faster. The next time you hop on that treadmill, you’ll find yourself as capable as the fit person running next to you.
Wasted time is wasted efforts
Most of the time, it’s useless spending a couple of hours in the gym if for most of the time you are resting or scrolling through your phone. Rest as little as possible in between exercises to avoid your heart rate from getting back to normal. Keeping your heart rate elevated will force your body to work harder, thus burning more calories.
Don’t underestimate warm-up – especially in the morning
Don’t get straight into a workout without warming up first. Your body, particularly your heart, needs to be prepared for the intense workout. This is important for those who prefer working out in the morning, as the body has been at rest for hours. Neglecting to warm up in the morning can make you feel exhausted throughout the day.
Don’t avoid the weights
Even though you’re not trying to achieve a bodybuilder physique, lifting weights can help in burning more calories. Unlike other exercises, building muscle will make your body burn calories even when you’re at rest. Plus, weight training will also keep your muscles in good shape, which is essential when you’re already starting to shed some fat.
Work on different muscle groups
Focusing on one area of each workout session is something that bodybuilders would do. But if weight loss is your motivation, you should look at alternating working different muscle groups. This technique, known as cross-training, is useful in sustaining a higher level of intensity than just working on the same muscle group. That means you should move on to working on your arms right after a set of lunges, then go back to working out on your lower body and so on.
Add more aerobic cardio to your routine
Aerobic cardio is easier to maintain than other types of exercise. Unlike weight lifting, cardio won’t result in sore muscles but will also be efficient in burning calories. This is the reason why people who are trying to lose weight are recommended to spend 60 per cent of their time on cardio and the rest on other workouts.
Try using a different cardio machine
We all have our favourite cardio machines, for some it may be the treadmill while for others the elliptical. However, it also pays to try something other than what you’re used to. In this way, you’ll feel more challenged, and your usual cardio session will seem to longer.
Alternate between varying intensities
Just like working on different muscle groups, you also need to work on different intensities. Don’t stick with only one pace, let your body work more and it will also burn more calories! During workout sessions, try alternating an aerobic exercise with a torture workout that you can do for a minute. Since this requires a lot of effort, make sure you don’t push yourself too much and just do the best you can.
Muscle pain is normal
Feel those legs burning after doing several sets of lunges? Good! That means you’re doing it right and you’re already burning calories because of a job well done.
Always engage your core
While most exercises involve engaging your core at some point, it’s better if you always try to squeeze it. Also, the body tends to burn more calories when it works on larger muscle groups, such as the abs and back. But to achieve better results, engage the large and small muscle groups (biceps) simultaneously. Think of your body like a wet towel and squeeze out all the fat it has absorbed.
Complete a HIIT workout at least once or twice a week
HIIT (high-intensity interval training) sessions are painstakingly efficient in shedding off some pounds. With just one course, HIIT can boost your metabolism for up to eight days, But it’s not recommended to be done every day as your muscles won’t be able to recover from all the hard work.
Doing more doesn’t make it better
Unless you’re a professional athlete who’s preparing for a competition, you don’t need to do more than what your body is capable of. According to Edward Jackowski, Ph.D., founder of EXUDE Fitness training programs, you don’t need to exceed an hour and 15 minutes when working out – no one has to. It’s not making anything better. Instead, overdoing your workouts might result in injury or overfatigue, and can ultimately stand in the way of reaching your goal.
Stand on something besides the floor
While inside the gym, try standing on a balance beam, trampoline or a Bosu ball. If you can’t find any of that, just step on and off a box. This will make your muscles adapt to the movement and encourage stability or resist gravity, which means it will burn more calories. This technique isn’t just applicable in the gym, but also anywhere else.
Listen to workout-appropriate songs
While your favourite songs might motivate you to get moving, you also have to consider if they’re “workout-appropriate.” In fact, it’s great to work with brand new songs or songs you’re unfamiliar with as you’ll have to work hard to keep up with the beat.
Switch between indoor and outdoor workouts
Working a sweat in different environments is another way to get your body to work harder. So aside from regularly visiting your gym, take advantage of the sunny day and exercise outside.
Water, water, water
This technique isn’t new at all, we need to drink water even when we’re not working out. But since we lose a lot of oxygen when we’re exhausted, the more we need to hydrate. Water contains oxygen so drinking during exercise will help replenish all that we lost to achieve a successful workout session.
Carefully select your pre-workout snack
If you’re really hungry, don’t deprive yourself of eating something before working out or you won’t be able to achieve optimum potential. However, it’s also better to start with an empty stomach as the body will get straight into the fat and burn it right away. To avoid packing on those extra calories before working out, eat only when you’re starving. If not, skip the snack and just wait for your post-workout meal.
Don’t let the scale define you
Jumping on the scale when losing weight has always been a thing; however, it’s not always accurate. Your goal is to lose fat, but the muscle you’re gaining might be heavier. So don’t be discouraged when you appear to have slimmed down but haven’t shed actual pounds. As long as your clothes fit better and you feel more confident, then you’re on the right track.
Isabel Speckman is a North Carolina-based freelance writer and work-from-home mother of three. In her 10 years as a professional writer, she’s worked in proposal management, grant writing, and content creation.
Personally, she’s passionate about teaching her family how to stay safe, secure and action-ready in the event of a disaster or emergency.
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