Struggling to find a workout routine that sticks? The secret to long-term benefits from your exercise routine is in the specifics. Here’s how to uncover the workout that’s best for you.
Which Workout Is Best For You?
We all know that we should be moving our bodies on a regular basis, but finding the time and motivation to maintain a specific exercise routine isn’t alwys easy. The secret? Find a workout you love and you’ll never look back. When you’re practising something you really enjoy, you’re far more likely to stick to it. If you’re on a mission to find which workout is best for you, here are a few key points to consider…
Any activity is better than no activity, but different types of workouts offer a broad variety of benefits and appeal to us for various reasons. Your first step in determining which workout is best for you, is to start thinking about the benefits you want to enjoy.
Aerobic exercises, like cycling, walking, running and playing tennis, will benefit your cardiovascular and muscular system, help to promote weight loss, as well as improve your immune system and stamina. They’re also great mood-boosters, as aerobic exercise prompts the release of endorphins, those sought-after ‘happy hormones’.
Anaerobic exercise, such as weight training, or sprints on the treadmill or outdoors will help to build stronger muscles, improve joint function, give you a leaner physique overall, decrease your risk of osteoporosis, and help you to develop better coordination and balance.
Swimming falls somewhere between the two and is considered to be a fabulous low impact exercise. It requires you to keep moving and your muscles are working against constant resistance. Rebounding on a mini-trampoline offers simular benefits, as this type of exercise is easy on the joints, while promoting cardiovascular and strength building benefits.
Flexibility exercises, such as Pilates and yoga, will help to improve the range of motion of your muscles and joints, plus the moves and poses help to develop great core strength and great posture.
Questions to ask yourself
Before taking the plunge and signing up for that gym contract or buying that new online workout programme, ask yourself these key questions;
“Can I commit to the expense of a gym contract, or will it be a waste of money?”
This can work two ways: some of us sign up, never go and just feel guilty. For others, signing up is a motivation in itself. If you haven’t been to a gym in a while, the good news is, many gyms now offer a wide range of new fitness classes, like aerial yoga and Zumba, which offer an exciting altnernative to boring treadmill workouts. A free walk around your gym of choice could also help you find out which workouts will be best for you.
“Will bad weather stop me exercising?”
If you’re not inclined to take your dog out in the cold, get out of bed for an outdoor bootcamp class, or participate in a walking race in the rain, then outdoor workouts might not be the best option for you. Rather consider joining an indoor club, sign up for aerobics classes, get friends to join you and set a firm timetable to go out – if you see it as a social event, you’re already halfway there.
“Do I have the time to exercise?”
Whether you work from home or in an office, or have a busy schedule around the kids, time is always a factor to consider when choosing the right workout for you. If, for instance, you love yoga but don’t have the time to commit to 90-minute classes at your local gym or club, then following a YouTube expert, DVD, or book – could be the answer. Shorter, higher intensity workouts are proving ideal for those short on time too, because all you need is 15-20 minutes to see results. If you’re a morning person and like the idea of achieving a goal first thing, set your alarm half an hour earlier three times a week and tick off that workout!
A freelance writer and editor, with 15 years’ experience in the media industry. With a passion for health and fitness, Tammy loves nothing more than researching the latest wellness trends. And if she’s not running around after her sweet four-year old daughter, you’ll find Tammy on her bike, in the gym or exploring the great outdoors – followed by a good coffee, of course!