I’m sure we can all agree that there is no better feeling than leaving the gym after an epic workout, dripping in sweat and having a sense of accomplishment that can’t be achieved by doing anything else. But, what about those times when you feel like your workout was just plain lousy, un-inspiring and boring? The last thing you’re going to want to do is go back the next day and do it all again? What you need is a workout shake-up! You’ve probably entered a plateau phase with regards to your fitness levels if you’re workouts just don’t seem to be inspiring or challenging you like they once did. It’s time to make your workouts go the extra mile so we’ve come to the rescue with these 3 different training methods that will inject some new moves and ways of training! These 3 workout add-ons are a sure fire way to guarantee that you finish your session feeling like superwoman!
You’ve probably heard of ‘super sets’ (two exercises performed back to back) which might sound simplistic but can actually be incredibly strenuous! Similar to a super set, a giant set is double the fun, instead of two exercises you perform four exercises back to back without any rest. Repeat that four to five times and you have a complete workout that will keep your heart rate up and push you one step closer to your fitness goals.
This is not supposed to be a ‘circuit’ style workout, your giant set should be made up of mainly weight lifting exercises. Be sure to include at least one compound lift like a squat or deadlift for example and then chose the others accordingly. You could decide to work one body part i.e. legs or, alternatively vary your exercises to get in a full body workout!
Think box jumps, burpees, squat jumps and scissor jumps! Any movement where your entire body leaves the ground for a few seconds is classed as a plyometric. Designed and used by athletes, plyometric workouts are used to increase power, agility and speed so what’s not to love? These movements usually just use your bodyweight, so a great way to incorporate them into your existing workout is to do them in your rest breaks. Minimizing rest and making your body work extra hard will quickly increase the intensity without having to use extra equipment.
If you’re looking to do something completely different and fancy a challenge you can also perform plyometric movements alone and make up an entire workout full of these explosive exercises! Be prepared to feel the burn!
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
If lack of time is usually your reason for not making it to the gym, then HIIT workouts really are for you. With some HIIT sessions lasting only 15-20 minutes there really are no excuses for not cramming in some exercise a few times a week. This form of training incorporates periods of maximum output with rest in between to bring your heart rate back down. Our personal favorite is treadmill sprints… we find doing 15 minutes of 30 second sprints with 60 seconds rest to be a particular favourite combination of ours! You are guaranteed to hop off the treadmill feeling super sweaty and amazingly good on the inside. This can be a great workout “finisher” to tack on to your normal workout routine… it will definitely shake things up!
If running isn’t your thing then try the rowing machine, bike or even bodyweight movements like mountain climbers and press ups. Literally anything goes, just make sure that you give it your all during the time you work and you’ll definitely feel the effects. As HIIT is so metabolically demanding your body actually continues to burn fat up to 24hrs after you finish your workout so it’s definitely worth a try!
Mixing up your workout routine is sometimes the best way to feel motivated and see results! If you’ve been doing the same thing for months and need a challenge, then try one of our recommendations to transform your workout and ramp up the intensity so that you finish knowing you did your best and went the extra mile!
Words by Isobel Lee, Personal Trainer, Online Coach and Fitness Blogger