When you finish a workout at the gym, do you feel like you have utterly exhausted all of your strength or do you feel like you could keep going a little bit longer? Are you seeing your progress plateau because you haven’t been pushing yourself harder as you gain strength? Perhaps the workout that used to be challenging when you first started has become much easier now, but you haven’t changed it up or adding any more difficulty?
The only way that you will continue to see progress in the gym is if you continue to increase the intensity of your workouts and keep challenging yourself. Many people are content to go through the motions of working out, without putting in the effort that it takes to make any sort of progress. If you want your workout to be a lot more rewarding, here are some tips that you should keep in mind:
How Is Your Body Responding to the Workout?
If you are working out and barely breaking a sweat, this is a sign that your body has gotten used to the level of intensity that you are currently at and you need to increase it. You should be overheating, breathing hard and sweating as you complete your workout – this is a sign that you are pushing your body to its maximum capacity and improving your fitness.
Create a Workout Tracker Notebook
Start keeping track of the details of your workout in order to increase it over time. Write down the weights that you use, the number of reps you do and the amount of time you spend doing cardio. Then, increase these numbers slightly every time you go to the gym. For example, if you put a 45lb weight on the machine last time, try 50lbs next time and once you can handle that you can increase it to 55, 60, 65, etc.
Try Interval Training
Intervals can be a very effective way to improve your fitness. They involve pushing your body to its maximum capacity for a short period of time, then allowing it to recover. Because you only have to sustain the interval for 30-90 seconds you can really push yourself. When you are running, try running at full speed for 60 seconds, then slowing down to a moderate pace for two minutes. Repeat this a few times and you will greatly improve your fitness.
Find the Music that Motivates You
Listening to intense and upbeat music can really motivate you to push harder during your exercise sessions. It should be music that you love and that makes you feel energetic – whatever genre that might be. When you start to think, “Okay, I’m tired now, that’s enough reps” you can listen to the music and tell yourself, “No, I can do a few more until the end of this song, I’m only cheating myself if I quit now.”
With these tips you will push yourself harder at your workout and make your time at the gym much more effective.