Whether you’re a cross-fit junkie, dedicated triathlete or three-day-a-week treadmill walker, there’s one thing everyone who works out regularly has in common: you eventually get bored. After weeks or months of doing the same exercise, in the same place, at the same time, not only is your body no longer challenged, but your mind starts craving something more. The solution is simple. To get the most out of fitness, you’ve got to switch things up!
You’ve got the basics covered, right? Whey protein at breakfast and before the gym, a pre-workout with creatine and caffeine, BCAAs while you train, glutamine when you’re done and a casein protein shake at bedtime. Sports nutrition supplements support all your efforts, but without a clean diet to supply the nutrients your body needs, you’re not going to get very far. It’s always best to fuel up with vitamins, minerals and other essentials from real food, but for back up, bodybuilders should consider taking a multivitamin.
Bra bulge. Muffin top. Love handles. Whatever you call it, that puffy extra layer of fat cushioning your upper and lower back can be maddening. Like belly fat, back fat can be hard for women to lose. But just as doing a gazillion sit ups won’t magically melt away the mound on your midsection, there’s no single exercise or diet secret that’s going to zap the flab on your back. So how can you reshape your rear side and finally rid yourself of those t-shirt ripples?
Reluctant to try resistance training? Many women think it will make them look too muscular or that their routines are tough enough without it. But strength-building exercises are a smart addition to a healthy fitness plan, and they can be easily incorporated into anyone’s weekly workout. In fact, two to three 20-minute sessions a week are really all you need to start seeing benefits!
If mixed martial arts (MMA) is your thing, a half hour to 45 minute-long jog first thing in the morning may be part of your routine. This training technique, with a history rooted in old-school boxing, is popular—but it can put a lot of stress on joints and muscles, ultimately hindering your performance. To keep your body in stress-free shape, try sprint training. Just what it sounds like, sprint training involves short, intense bursts of activity for effective cardio conditioning.
It’s a common question for dieters: do I really have to count calories? As a personal trainer who counsels clients on nutrition, I feel that obsessing over numbers isn’t healthy. Knowing how your body feels, on the other hand, is. We’ve been programmed to think that fewer calories equals weight loss. In reality, it’s not just about calories—it’s about portion size, the types of foods you’re eating and many other factors. Eating a balanced diet that includes lean proteins, complex carbohydrates and healthy fats will not only support healthy weight loss, it will help you with a realistic, long-term healthy eating plan.
There are no real shortcuts to getting “buff,” but these tips will help you use your time more effectively. If you are among the majority of people who feel like there just aren’t enough hours in the day, it’s time to work smart in addition to working hard. This list focuses on the most impactful, time-efficient tactics to keep your body in check while still allowing you to maintain a social life.
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