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Rebel Against the Rut

Simple ways to keep your workout exhilarating.

It is easy to forget the goals you made for yourself for the New Year. Keeping your workouts interesting and stimulating will help keep you focused on achieving those goals. Another way to stay motivated is to post them in writing somewhere where you’ll be constantly reminded. Here are five additional ways to make your workouts more exciting and challenging:

Use a medicine ball. These are great for balance, coordination and core strength. There are several exercises you can do from push-ups to abdominal exercises to lunges – you can do an entire workout with just a medicine ball.

Use a Swiss ball. They are great for a variety of things, including stretching, abdominal exercises and yoga.

Incorporating a Swiss ball into your workout will make weight lifting a little more challenging. Try using it as your bench while doing seated or supine exercises. Just a slight change can make your exercise more challenging by incorporating stabilizer muscles.

Add some kickboxing. All moves from kickboxing and martial arts, such as a basic punch or kick. These are great ways to increase your heart rate and they add an exciting new move. Adjust the level of intensity to your fitness ability.

Research some kickboxing moves and their proper technique. If available, use punching gloves and accessories to make it even more exciting! These exercises are a great way to build strength in your upper and lower body incorporating punching, kicks and lunges.

Mix your cardio and weights. It can be very challenging to mix the two. Try doing your warm-up and jumping directly into your weights. Do cardio in-between sets to keep your heart rate up.

Try an entire workout of just body weight. Many people get so caught up with the equipment and weights in a gym and forget the one tool we all have: our own bodies! Getting back to the basic exercises that only require the weight we have on our body can be extremely challenging. Find some ideas from the Internet or magazines for the huge variety of things you can do with your body alone. While machines and free weights are a great addition, this is a great way to incorporate something new.

Changing your workouts and keeping them interesting are keys to success. It keeps us from getting bored and keeps our bodies guessing. If you ever get in a rut, ask a personal trainer; they’re there to help keep you on track and motivated, and give you new ideas to keep you on your toes. Exercise is something to enjoy, so treat yourself to success!

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