If you think you have to go to the gym to get in a good workout, think again. Where you do your workout and even what kind of workout you choose doesn’t matter. The keys to a good workout are getting your heart rate up and working multiple muscle groups.
If you prefer working out at the gym and using equipment to exercise, there’s nothing wrong with that. But remember that you can still get in a good workout at home without any equipment. Bodyweight exercises are becoming increasingly popular for their simplicity and effectiveness.
Whether you’re new to exercising or looking to revamp your workout routine, here are six tips to help you get the most out of your fitness routine.
Be consistent. Find a routine you can stick with. At the minimum, you should be getting 30 minutes of physical activity, five days a week. If you’re not sure where to start, talk to a certified professional trainer who can help you set a workout plan that suits your needs, goals and lifestyle.
Follow an effective routine. While there are plenty of exercise options to choose from, most certified professional trainers recommend a routine that includes strength training, interval training, and increased cardio/aerobic exercise.
Be realistic. When setting your goals, don’t aim for perfection, but focus on improving and increasing healthy behaviors. This is especially true if you’re just getting off the couch and beginning an exercise routine. If you’ve never run a race before, don’t aim to run a marathon. Start by walking 15 minutes a day and gradually work up to running a 5K before moving on to bigger goals.
Find a buddy. Grab a friend or family member who also wants to establish healthy habits. Train together, encourage one another and hold each other accountable. You’re much more likely to get out of bed and get moving for your morning workout if you know someone is waiting on you.
Have fun. Walking on the treadmill for an hour a day can be boring and monotonous. The less you enjoy your workout routine, the less likely you are to stick with it. Exercise should be fun. Find activities you enjoy and incorporate them into your lifestyle.
Be patient. Remember that you won’t see results overnight. Everyone experiences setbacks in their journey to fitness. No matter your goals, give yourself time to see the new, healthier you take shape. When you hit a plateau (and you will), keep it up, and you’ll see results in the end.
Before beginning a new exercise routine, check with your doctor to be sure the activities you plan to do are safe for you. Working with a professional trainer is also recommended, as doing so will help you set realistic expectations and develop correct form to help avoid injury.