Ambitious people rock my world! I am the self acclaimed princess of “go hard or go home,” but I am also the anchor lady for “rest to feel your best.” Every relationship needs balance; even the ones you have with your workouts. Pushing your body to new limits is awesome, but listening to your body is equally great. So if you want lasting success in fitness follow these simple tips and take the burnout out of your workout.
More is not better. Where all my over achievers at? Stand up! Or…maybe sit down. In fitness more is not better. I am at the gym everyday (cause I work there), and am shocked when I see the same people, every single day, doing the same workouts, and sometimes even doubling up with ‘two a days.’ Craziness! Your body is not impressed with your ability to spend two hours in the gym and shows you so by either burning out or shutting down…hello injuries.
So the key is to schedule recovery days. Your body absolutely needs ample time to rest, recover and repair. Think 24-48 hours (time varies dependent on workout/post workout soreness). Once a muscle is torn down it has to have time to rebuild in order to yield the best results…and that is what you are working out for right…the results?
Gradually up your game. So you finally did all 60 seconds of push ups (off your knees) in bootcamp on Saturday. Nice. You are high off of your success. So then on Monday morning you decide to up your five pounders to twelves and by lunch you can barely type an email. You silly Billy. The key is to increase your resistance, speed, duration etc. in 5% increments as your strength improves. Anything more can lead to more time spent on the bench and less time spent in the game. Remember, “slow and steady wins the race.”
Mix It Up. Speaking of staying in the game, also focus more on changing the game. All athletes (professional or recreational) know that the key to optimal performance is cross training. This means performing different exercises on different days that work different muscles. Working the same muscles over and over again can create muscular imbalances and lead to…come on take a wild guess: injures. So this week when you schedule your workouts, make sure you have a well balanced program that consists of cardio, strength training and flexibility training. P.S. Fitness is always way more fun when “variety” is invited to the party!
Leave Your Ego In the Locker Room. It’s not safe in these sweaty streets when your head is bigger than your muscles. If you are feeling “off your game,” dizzy, nauseous, light headed, exhausted etc. take the day off. These are all cues that your body needs a time out and pushing it past this point is not only unsafe, but reckless. Most people who have medical injuries in the gym experienced the warning signs, yet ignored them. Have the courage to push past the urge to always push…who cares if you have to sit out a sweat session or two sometimes.