4 Ways to Optimize Your Workouts

It can be so hard to figure out what type of exercise is right for you, and to make the most of your time in the gym! From gentle practices like restorative yoga, to high intensity interval training, the options are endless, and can seem overwhelming. Here are 4 tips to help decide which type of exercise is right for you, and to maximize the benefits to moving your body!

  1. Mix It Up!

    Research shows, that our bodies need VARIABILITY! This can be hard, especially when you find one type of workout you especially enjoy. However, just like how our diets should vary (not always eating the same foods), so should our movement! So, if you’re a cardio queen, time to hit up the gym and lift some weights! If you love to lift heavy and go hard, try to balance things out with some restorative yoga on your recovery days. By far, the best way to shift your metabolism, burn fat, and get stronger is my changing up your routine on the regular.

2. Earn Your Carbs

I hate to break it to you, but you CAN’T exercise away a poor diet. And for the most part, all the carbs we need we should get from veggies and fruit…YES veggies are carbohydrates! I’m not saying you need to eat a ketogenic diet, but timing with carbohydrates and sugar is everything. Do you normally consume carbohydrates before bed? Unfortunately, then your body is storing those away as fat, right away! If you’re going to indulge, have carbs right after a hard workout, when your metabolism is in full gear, and your body is depleted of glycogen (sugar) stores…it will put them to use right away to rebuild and repair your body!

3. Meet Your Body Where It’s At

Tune in to how you FEEL during and after your workouts. Our bodies are constantly changing, and what works one week (or day!), may not be the best the next. Do you feel any pain, discomfort, shakiness, or fatigue during your workout? Your body is telling you to SLOW down! Do you feel crashed after your run, like you need a nap after? That’s a hint that you should either lower the intensity or duration of your workout. Wake up feeling awesome like you could conquer the world? That’s a great day to hit it hard in the gym!

4. Take Care of Your Heart

Heart rate monitoring is direct biofeedback, where you can tune into how much stress your workouts are putting on your body. We recommend Dr. Phil Maffetone’s heart rate formula. He has studied and researched heart rate training and variability, and uses this formula to train world class endurance athletes! He has a few variations, but his general formula is as follows:

Take 180-your age, subtract 5 from that number. That is the highest your heart rate should be during your workout! Subtract another 10 and that is your range for the duration of your workout.

Ex: 30 year old. 180-30=150. Minus 5=145. Ideal range is 135-145 beats per minute!

This is much lower than most people are used to! But this formula actually STRENGTHENS the heart, making it a more efficient muscle. The lower heart rate is also very gentle on hormones and the adrenal glands, and promotes fat loss! Yes, please!

Start utilizing these tips this month in your exercise routine, and let us know how you feel! What is your favorite way to exercise? Leave us a note in the comments! Want to learn more? Join us at this month’s Dinner with the Doctors where we will go more in depth on the topic! Register, here!