Having the motivation to push yourself harder so that you can achieve your goals is a great thing, but the truth is a lot of results come from working out smarter, instead of just pushing yourself harder!
This means stepping back and having an overall look at your approach to exercise, including your diet, your sleeping patterns and of course the types of exercise you are participating in.
So here are some tips to help ensure that you are working out smarter, not harder!
The types of exercises you choose - If your goal is to get fitter, then cardio is an excellent choice. However JUST participating in cardio is not the fastest, nor the most effective way of achieving your goals. Strength building practices are also essential because they help develop lean muscle mass and in turn help speed up your metabolism and burn more calories. So try to mix it up and incorporate both cardio and resistance training into your week.
Getting your rest days - Rest days are important. It is a fact! If you have been training specific muscle groups one day, then move to another the next day. Or if you have been training in some high intensity cardio, then consider having active recovery days to allow your body to recover, and repair.
Getting the right types of fuel - If you are not feeding yourself the right types of fuel, then you are not going to have the materials needed to rebuild and repair stressed muscle fibres, or the energy to continue on! So make sure your diet is rich in vegetables and fruits as well as complete proteins and good fats, so that you have all the nutrients and fuel you will need.
Getting enough fuel - If you are not getting enough fuel then you are going to start to feel lethargic, tired and probably a little irritated or emotional. I do not promote starving yourself to achieve results. Your body needs fuel! So if weightloss is something you are working towards, then make healthy food choices, opt for adequate meal sizes and consider having more frequent smaller meals rather than 3 large meals.
- Getting enough sleep - The majority of work that goes into rebuilding and repairing stressed or damaged muscles fibres actually happens when you are sleeping, so getting enough sleep each night is an important consideration in working towards achieving your goals! We also need enough sleep each day to ensure that our minds are focused and alert, and so that we have the motivation and determination to get up and at it!