Having to conquer obstacles which restrict your ability to abide by new year fitness resolutions is a given. This happens especially when we look towards achieving goals that are fundamentally too ambitious in nature. A more rational approach would be to focus on short-term targets which can be measured to tick specific milestones off your list over the year.
To prevent failure at any point during the year, here are some long-term workouts to help you kick start the year with bigger muscles and total body fitness improvement.
Train for Functional Fitness
The execution of daily activities which include chores or physically-related tasks involve the use of our body’s major muscles. A full body strength workout can help increase functional fitness. A few of the exercises which can be included as part of a routine are push-ups, pull-ups, squats, lunges, planks and leg raises. If you are having difficulty performing basic repetitions of an individual exercise, start slowly with assisted, negative or simpler variations. As soon as you are able to master the basic form, your workouts can then progress to include more intense variations of the exercise.
Joining a group workout will help motivate you to improve functional fitness through short but explosive workouts, apart from improving camaraderie between you and your peers. Using your body’s natural movement pattern that are intensified by your bodyweight or loaded weights, this workout will help you develop a dynamic balance between speed and muscle strength, besides enhancing athletic endurance.
Learn to Dance
Dance is a type of exercise that supplements a variety of health benefits via aerobic and anaerobic movement. These include increased muscular fitness, motor fitness, endurance, bone strength building, improved flexibility, and cardiovascular health.
Dances such as Zumba incorporate use of your hips and stomach to develop core strength. It also involves learning agile footwork which will help you strengthen your calves and ankles. It is accompanied by Latin and salsa-style music, and choreographed with intervals of intensity to suit all fitness levels. Incorporating squats, slow push-ups against a wall and jumping exercises will also provide you with a full body workout.
Start Cycling Regularly
Cycling is a workout that enables you to reap benefits for your body that can be similarly acquired through dancing. Cycling also promotes mental health improvement, weight loss and muscle building. A few ways in which you can increase your workout intensity include uphill cycling, using bigger gears and using a block training method (different type of cycling for different days).
If you are a cycling beginner, joining a spin class can teach you the basics such as setting up your bike and how to start cycling. You will also be in control of your cycling routine intensity that will provide a well-rounded workout accompanied with high-tempo music that builds endurance and strengthens your legs.
Pick Up Yoga
Yoga practice is based upon three primary elements – exercise, meditation and breathing. A successful combination of these elements will aid in strengthening and toning muscles, increasing flexibility, improving cardiovascular health, and blood circulation. Yoga involves the use of gentle stretches, postures and poses that work together with focused breathing to provide you with a calm mind.
Pilates is a class that combines elements of yoga with other exercise forms in a total body workout that will provide better body awareness and posture. Each exercise that you learn will be customised to suit your own level of strength and flexibility. Over time, you will be able to stretch and lengthen all the major muscle groups in your body, while improving flexibility, strength and balance.
The most important factor behind a workout plan and its effectiveness is a progressive increase in intensity over time. This is especially vital to keep routines fresh and ensure that your body is constantly being physically tested. This will enable you to achieve long-term goals that will drive you to continue pushing forward with the same workout plan.