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Up Your Game: Making Effective Changes to Your Fitness Routine

February 25, 2020
Published in: Fitness

Group of young adults on exercise bikes

It's no secret that exercise is a vital part of maintaining good health. However, the Center for Disease Control reports that only 23% of Americans get the recommended amount of exercise every week. If you're among the rare percentage that's consistently exercising or someone struggling to get fit, this article can help you incorporate effective changing to make your exercise routine as impactful as possible.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous aerobic activity is recommended. Exercise can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several diseases like type 2 diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Most importantly, regular activity can improve your quality of life.

To make sure you're getting the most out of your exercise routine, check out these tips for making your fitness routine as effective as possible!

Get Back to Basics

All fitness routines should incorporate five elements: aerobic fitness, strength training, core exercises, balance training, and flexibility and stretching. Whether you are just dipping your toes into becoming physically active or you are a fitness fanatic, a well-rounded fitness training program is essential. Let's take a closer look at the five foundational elements of exercise.

Two women doing water aerobicsAerobic

  • The cornerstone of most fitness programs
  • Includes anything that uses large muscle groups and increases your heart rate
  • Examples include: walking, running, swimming, biking and dancing

Strength Training

  • Helps increase bone strength, muscular fitness & can help you manage or lose weight
  • Aim for incorporating this twice a week
  • Examples include: resistance bands, pushups, pull-ups, leg squats & crunches

Core Exercises

  • These help train your muscles to brace the spine and enable you to use your upper and lower body muscles more effectively
  • Examples include: bridges, planks, sit ups & fitness ball exercises

Balance Training

  • Help maintain your balance at any age
  • These help older adults prevent falls and maintain their independence
  • Anyone can benefit from these exercises as they help stabilize your core muscles
  • Examples include: standing on one leg for extended periods of time

Flexibility & Stretching

  • Stretching helps increase flexibility
  • Improves range of motion of your joints, may promote better posture and can help relieve stress & tension
  • Examples include: yoga & Pilates

It is important that you incorporate these five elements into your workout routine. They don't all need to be in every session, but including them in your weekly routine can help promote fitness for life. Not only will incorporating these elements promote a healthier lifestyle, but they will help to keep your workout routine fun and give it lots of variety.

Up Your Game Tips

Nobody has ever gone to the gym hoping to get "so-so" results. We go with the hopes of getting as much out of our workout routine as possible! However, that can be a lot easier said than done. Here are a few tips to get as much out of your workout plan as possible.

Young woman lifting weights with a trainerLift Weights

According to a study of 10,500 adults done by the Harvard School of Public Health, those who spent 20 minutes a day weight training gained less abdominal fat over the course of 12 years compared to those just doing cardio.

Switch Things Up

Performing multiple variations of an exercise changes the muscles recruited and assures that your body will be challenged resulting in greater gains.

Get a Workout Buddy

Having someone else around pushes you to perform at your best and causes you to exercise longer and harder. Being accountable to someone for your physical fitness will help you stay on track and keep motivated.

Getting the most out of your physical routine is key! Keep your routine exciting, fun and purposeful.

The Amazing Benefits of Exercise

The benefits of exercise are hard to ignore! Everyone benefits from exercise regardless of age, sex, or physical ability. Here are some of the top benefits of regular exercise:

  • Controls Weight
  • Combats Health Conditions & Disease
  • Improves Mood
  • Boosts Energy
  • Promotes Better Sleep
  • Puts the Spark Back Into Your Sex Life

Remember to always check with your doctor before starting a new physical activity especially if you have concerns about your fitness, haven't been active for a while or have a chronic disease.

Resources at Augusta Health for Better Fitness

The Augusta Health Fitness Center offers a variety of wellness and fitness programs to help you achieve a wide range of health benefits, regardless of your current fitness level. Contact us to find out about our fitness facility, group classes, and aquatic programs.