Are you spending endless hours in the gym sweating buckets and working yourself to exhaustion, desperately trying to reach your fitness goals, but something just isn't working? You’re not alone! It seems like a common sense that by exercising more, you’d naturally see results faster. In actuality, overdoing it in the gym can often hold you back, rather than help. These are my top tips for training smarter rather than harder. These pointers have helped many of my clients with the same mentality maximise their results with less time and effort than they’re ever given before!
Knowing exactly what exercises, sets and reps you’ll be doing when you enter the gym will provide you with focus and an endpoint. Aimlessly using every machine is sight until you’re exhausted won’t get you very far - following a well-designed training program by a professional will.
Intensity is key - make sure you’re giving 100% of your focus and energy to your workouts and pushing yourself. For example, if you’re weight training, the last few reps of each set should be a real struggle! If you’re truly giving your all, you won’t need to or have the energy to spend more than 30-45 minutes training.
When we exercise, we put our bodies under stress, which causes an increase in the hormone cortisol. This is the body’s natural response and is completely normal. However, if you’re consistently over-training, chronic levels of cortisol can be reached, which can have a negative impact. Too much cortisol inhibits your body’s ability to burn fat and can even encourage fat storage, especially around the abdomen.
You can burn a lot of calories in a short amount of time doing high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which also increases your metabolic rate for up to 24hours after you finish. One of my favourite forms of HIIT is treadmill sprints. Try doing 15-20 minutes of 20 seconds at maximum intensity (as hard and as fast as possible) followed by a brisk walk for 1 minute to recover. This workout only needs to be done one to three times a week to avoid over -stressing your system.
Did you know that the greater muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn at rest? Including weight training in your routine will help you build muscle and add curves to your body in all the right places. Lifting weights has also been proven to keep your metabolism elevated for longer post-workout than cardio exercise. I recommend a mixture of weight training and cardio to my clients for the best results. Article Text