Most people who are into fitness love training. It’s more than a hobby – it’s a passion. That said, everyone at one point will feel like they’re stuck in a rut and need to find ways to breathe new life into a stale workout program.
While these tips appear simple to do and might not look like much, it will surprise you how much they will alter the course of your training which means your body will have to adapt. That also means your body will improve which at the end of the day is what we all want.
Use Bar Grips
In case you’re not familiar with what I’m talking about, bar grips fit over your barbell, dumbbells, machine handles, or in some cases, even cambered bars. These grips aren’t for comfort but rather so the place you position your hands is thicker. This means your forearms will be more involved because it will be more of a challenge to hold onto whatever you’re trying to move. This also forces the muscles your training to work harder to stabilize and control the weight.
This is more popular with arm training, but it can be used with almost any upper body movement. Switching it up with grips can help you crawl out of your fitness rut by challenging you in a way that is different than just upping the weight. So don’t be afraid to try grips for a new approach to bench presses, overhead presses, or even rows. You can also use them on cable attachments or machines too including the rope or single handle attachments.
Superset Cardio with Weight Training
You might have done supersets with two weight training movements before but have you ever tried supersetting cardio with your weight training? If not, this will be a whole new challenge to get you out of your fitness rut, so be prepared. We’ll use abs training as an example. Let’s say you do hanging leg raises for abs. Instead of supersetting with crunches, go into doing mountain climbers for 20-30 seconds. This complete change in training will shock the muscles, help you burn calories, challenge your endurance as well as your cardiovascular system, and force you to take deeper breaths and more oxygen. This is going to take a few sessions to get used to so don’t expect to go straight into master levels if you’re new to this.
Reverse the Pyramid
You’ve likely started training by doing lighter sets for higher reps followed by adding weight when the reps decrease. That’s nothing new but have you ever flipped the script? Yes, I mean start with the heaviest weight for the few reps and lightened the load as the sets progressed. No, this isn’t a drop set. This will challenge your Type 1 muscle fibers because Type 2a and 2b fibers will be pre-exhausted from doing the heavier weights.
You can do the first exercise as you would normally so you can warm up effectively but for every exercise after that, start with your heaviest weight and do standard sets. Start with 6-8 reps and go up to 10 on your second set. Follow that up by going for 12-15 on your third. You’ll be surprised how much different the weights will feel and your muscles might even be sore the next day. The results will make it worth it, and will get you one step closer to getting out of your fitness rut and getting you excited about training again!
If you're finding it hard to stick to a fitness routine, here we’ve discussed three small tweaks that will help you achieve big results. By making these simple changes to your workout routine, you'll be on your way to a more toned body in no time! So what are you waiting for? Make these small tweaks and start seeing the results you've always wanted.
Answers You Want To Know
1. What should I do if I can't make it to the gym on a regular basis?
If you're finding it difficult to make it to the gym on a regular basis, try taking these three small but effective tweaks.
- Make sure your schedule is packed with enough healthy meals and snacks so that you don't feel tempted to indulge in junk food.
- Set realistic goals for yourself - if going to the gym twice a week isn't possible, aim for at least 10 minutes of cardio or 30 minutes of strength training each time.
- Be active every day even if it's just taking a short stroll around campus!
2. How can I get the most out of my workouts at the gym?
When it comes to working out at the gym, sometimes it can be hard to find new ideas or stick to the plan. That's why try these three tips to get the most out of your workout and see results:
- Set smaller goals rather than thinking about the entire day/week/month as one giant goal. If you're trying to lose weight for instance, break your goal into smaller, more manageable chunks instead of thinking about how much weight you'll lose in a month or a year.
- Work out for shorter periods of time (30 minutes instead of an hour), and take breaks between sets. This will help you avoid feeling overwhelmed or burned out during your workouts, and will allow you to keep up the intensity and momentum without feeling too tired afterwards.
- Make sure your workouts are challenging but doable - if you struggle following along, try using a workout playlist or working with a trainer. These kinds of interventions will help you push yourself further while keeping you safe and comfortable.
3. What is the best time of day to work out at the gym?
It's hard to say specifically what the best time of day to work out at the gym is, as everyone has different workout routines. That said, most people seem to perform better in the morning hours. This is because cortisol levels are lower then in the afternoon and evening. Morning workouts also tend to be more productive as your body is primed and ready for action.
4. How many times per week should I work out?
When it comes to working out, the best rule of thumb is to work out at least three times per week. However, this number can vary depending on your goals. If you're looking to lose weight or build muscle, then you'll have to change up the intensity and duration of your workouts.
Additionally, some great exercises that can be done in less than 5 minutes are squats, pushups, lunges, and planks. So make sure to mix up your routine and include different types of cardio and weights to see results!
5. How long should my workouts be?
There's no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best time to work out depends on your body's individual needs and preferences. However, here are a few tips that can help you get started:
- Listen to your body! If you're not in the mood for a workout, then don't force yourself. Maybe try stretching or cardio beforehand to get your body warmed up.
- Change it up! If you're finding that your workouts are always the same, it may be time to mix things up a bit. Try adding cardio into your routine, doing circuit training instead of weightlifting, or switching up your gym location.
- Take small tweaks! Even if you're sticking with the same routine, make small tweaks like increasing the duration of your cardio session or adding more resistance when strength training. These little changes can result in big changes over time!
6. Can I do cardio while working out at the gym?
While cardio training is definitely beneficial for overall health and weight loss, it shouldn't be your only focus when working out at the gym. Mixing up your routine with other exercises can help you reach your fitness goals even faster. Try these three tips to help you get started:
- Increase your intensity by doing more reps or sets, or increase the time you spend on each exercise.
- Add in resistance training with weights to boost your results even further.
- Finally, make sure that before heading to the gym, you warm up by stretching!