Top 3 Spring Workout Tips

Spring is officially in the air! Along with ditching the winter jackets and doing a bit of spring cleaning, people often use this time to get more active and prep themselves for the upcoming bathing suit season. I thought this would be a great time to share some of my workout wisdom and give you all my tips on how to get the most out of your workouts.  Keep in mind that there are lots of differing opinions on exercise.  These are just some basic tips that I have found helpful since the beginning of my time in the gym. Whether you're working out outside or sticking to the weight room these tips are good to keep in mind while on your fitness journey!

1. Keep up that heart rate! - There has been some recent research that shows that intensity of a workout is more beneficial than duration in disease prevention.  This means that 20 minutes of intense exercise is better than 1 hour of light or moderate exercise.  Monitoring your heart rate at the gym is a great way to make sure you're actually giving your body a good workout. If you're not sweating and getting your heart rate up on every gym visit, you're not making the most of your time. There are various heart rate zones you should aim for depending on your age and goals. Most cardio machines have heart rate monitors built right into the handles. Other heart rate monitors, that you wear on your wrist or chest, are also available.  Check out the chart below and see where your heart rate should be during your workouts. A good goal to strive for is 30 min of moderate exercise 5 times a week. Get in the zone!

 2.  Less is more! - This tip mostly applies to men trying to get a bit more bulk while lifting weights. When it comes to resistance exercise like weight lifting, you don't necessarily need to spend hours in the gym. It's best to get the most muscle gains out of the least amount of time and effort. This can be done by sticking to one set of each exercise and making sure you lift enough weight to reach muscle exhaustion by the 7th rep. Make sure to also use a cadence of 5sec/5sec meaning you take 5 seconds to lift the weight and 5 seconds to return the weight to the starting position. I've personally found this really helps with muscle gains and cuts down on time at the gym. I read about this technique in The Four Hour Body by Tim Ferris--check out the book for more info!

3. Post workout fuel - Making sure to fuel up with some protein and carbohydrates within 30 minutes after your workout is crucial for recovery. After a workout your muscles are starving for protein and nutrients, don't deprive them!  Consider shakes or bars that contain both protein and carbs if prep is an issue.  The idea is that the sugar post workout will help to create an insulin spike in your blood which will tell your muscles to open their doors to take in all of the delicious protein. This is how you can assure that your muscles are able to uptake as much protein as possible in that first hour post workout. Also, be sure to not include fiber in your shake as this will slow down the absorption of the carbs and decrease the effectiveness of that insulin spike. This is really the only time that you want a blood sugar spike happening in your system. For more ideas on diet and working out see Christine's post on maximizing your workouts with diet.

Good luck to all of you on your spring workout goals. Leave a comment for any great tips you've picked up on your fitness journey!



Joseph said...

These are truly amazing workout tips to start exercising. It will be extremely useful for me as I am also going to start exercising to lose some weight.

Charul arrya said...

Whether you need to use more than a single scoop of whey protein.
whey protein india

Mary Kaczor said...

These are fantastic tips! I use billysadventures workout system but I surely want to check yours as well.

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