While the benefits of exercising are insurmountable, there are ways that one can keep fit as well as maximize on their workout sessions. You do not want to spend hours in the gym trying to lose weight, get stronger, leaner, fitter, and yet not be able to see any physical changes in regards to muscle definition and strength. The secret is in mixing up your workout regimen. By incorporating and changing certain components of exercise, you can intensify and revamp an old workout routine. This strategy can prove effective when it comes to overall fitness and weight loss.
It is always an added incentive when you begin a new fitness routine and realize immediate results. And while the initial weight loss tends to be more dramatic in many programs, following the same old routine causes the body to reach what is commonly known as a plateau or equilibrium. This is when your workout routine or diet stops yielding the desired results and at this point, you are literally chasing after your own tail. The best thing to take away from this video is that you have to change your intensity and workouts, this is why high intensity training does wonders.
Frustrating as that may sound, plateaus are easily overcome with a few tweaks and adjustments to your fitness strategies. Plateaus are as a result of the body’s ability to adjust to stress and change. This affects your basal metabolic weight, which declines, your body burns fewer calories at rest, and due to a reduced metabolic rate your weight loss either completely stops or slows down.
The muscular plateau is also common in individuals who are strength training. The body reaches a point where it is unable to gain muscle, weight or strength. At this point, the body has adapted individual muscle groups to accommodate the strength of the training. A professional trainer can help you incorporate a routine that will challenge the rest of your muscle groups to work harder and smash through the plateau.
- Adaptation is key to avoid muscle stagnation. This will keep your body and mind focused and engaged to the intensity and the constant change in your workouts.
- By breaking through a plateau can help you breathe new life to an otherwise dated and old routine. This “spicing-up” makes working out more fun as you start thinking outside the box while you challenge yourself to be more creative in your routine. This focus gives you a euphoric sense of achievement like no other as you test your physical limitations.
- Integrative fitness combines various types of exercises and activities that target all the muscle groups. Some that you didn’t even know existed.
- Changing up the time you workout as well can have some effect. Morning exercises yield better results when it come to resistance training, according to a research laboratory based in Korea.
Combining high-intensity interval training with resistance training sessions can be strenuous to the body, especially to someone who has never exercised before, so precaution has to be taken in order to prevent serious injury. For this to be successful, it’s imperative that any beginner builds some strength and fitness before attempting to venture into this level of training.
It’s also important to never skimp on essential nutrients which are protein, carbohydrates, fiber, and fat. These are vital for muscle development, the restoration of glycogen that is depleted during workouts, and finally to keep energy levels, respectively.
High-Intensity Interval Training
Workouts, in this case, involve various intervals of high intensity workouts, which ensure that you reap the maximum benefits from your exercises in a short period of time. Recent studies form “Journal of Obesity” suggests that only 12 weeks into a high-intensity interval workout program will reduce abdominal visceral fat, increase lean body mass, and aerobic power. So what’s not to love about high-intensity interval training?
Here are some more health benefits to ponder upon:
- It is challenging yet fun because you get to choose and formulate your own workouts
- Helps endurance through effective use of energy
- Burns fat and calories in a short period of time and continues to do so, hours after working out
- Boosts metabolism
- No equipment necessary
- It keeps your heart healthy and your blood flow effective throughout the whole body become more than capable of pushing yourself past an anaerobic zone
- Improves glycemic control
- Recovery from exercise is a breeze because of the rest intervals in-between
- Improves muscular strength
High-intensity workouts typically run between 5 to 30 minutes, so decide which muscle groups you want to target on the day. From a single muscle group such as your core to multiple muscle group such as the shoulders, biceps, and triceps for a total body workout.
Next, decide on the intensity and ratio. A standard high-intensity ratio being 2:1, which means 20 seconds of high-intensity weight lifting followed by 10 seconds rest period. You can interchange the ratios to 1:2 if they seem a tad challenging in the beginning.
In order to improve on body composition, conditioning levels, and fat loss, training intervals for high-intensity interval training should be between once or twice per week.
These stop-and-go workouts during high-intensity training vary. That’s the whole point. A good example would be running on the treadmill at a very fast pace, then alternating to a slow jog or walk. Other High-intensity workouts can be as follows:
Cycling workout: Start with a 2-3 minute warm-up cycle. Then move to the next level, this time cycle as hard as you can for 10 minutes. Rest for 10 seconds and start all over again. Repeating this interval about 10 – 20 times.
Circuit training workout:This workout involves performing three exercises back to back by doing 10 reps of each for the first cycle, then repeat the whole cycle by doing 15 and 20 reps only take a 3-5 minute cardio rest until you are done with all three exercises. Feel free to use alternative exercises that suit you best.
- Jumping jacks
Advanced circuit training: Takes 20 intense seconds for each exercise to complete the whole circuit, followed by 2 minutes of rest. Then repeat the whole circuit 2 or 3 more times. Rearrange the exercises to best suit your follow-through.
- Jumping jacks
- Ball chest passes
- Push-ups squats
- Bodyweight rows
- Jumping rows
is a whole other ball game as far as weights and rest times are concerned. The basic principle of this training means that your program is composed of strength training, balance exercises, flexibility training, and aerobic training. Here you will use different weights and other types of resistance such as fixed weight, your own body weight, and rubber bands.
Exercises are designed to target a particular muscle group, where you use repetition reps continuously for each workout set without resting. Resistance training allows you to switch around your workout routine, which can be challenging, but in the long run, your muscles adapt and strengthen.
With resistance training, progressive overload principle applies as far as strength training activities are concerned. This is where you need to choose an appropriate yet challenging resistance or weight and then push yourself to a point where it’s impossible to do another repetition.
With regular adjustments to your training variables such as the frequency between sets, duration, the intensity of weight used, exercises undertaken, sets, repetitions, and rest between sets, this is a good technique because it ensures that you improve and make progress on your overall technique. Varying your resistance training programs will also ensure that you will maintain any gained strength and you will not fall victim to muscle plateau.
Examples of resistance training include:
- Your own weight – which is the most convenient for those times you are away from the gym. They can range from, push-ups, chin-ups, and squats.
- Weight machines
- Free weights – Dumbbells or barbells
- Medicine balls
- Resistance balls
There are very many physical, mental and health benefits to be gained through resistance training. Having a ripped body is just the beginning. Other benefits include:
- muscle strength, muscle tone, flexibility, and balance. This protects your joints from injury and pain management
- Prevents chronic conditions such as obesity, diabetes, arthritis, back pain, and heart diseases
- Helps reduce and prevent cognitive decline
- Increased muscle-to-fat-ratio
- Increase in bone density and strength, which reduces the risks of osteoporosis
- Improved posture
- Improved mobility
- Enhanced performance and greater stamina for everyday tasks, which can help you remain independent even as you age
- Improved well-being and increased self-esteem as resistance training boosts your overall body image and mood
- Training releases the “happy hormone” Serotonin, which prevents depression. Endorphins that reduce your sensitivity to pain during exercise and Dopamine, which helps you feel mentally alert!
In conclusion, each time you are attempting any type of resistance or high-intensity interval training, safety is paramount. You will be using heavy duty equipment that can cause injury not only to you but to those around you if not handled with care. As always, you need to warm-up before and after your workout routines. These can be simple stretches, light aerobics, and dynamic stretches.Allocate days for resistance training and high-intensity training so that you can reap the benefits of both worlds.