How to Make Exercise Work

Whether you are working out to lose weight or simply to be healthier, it is sometimes hard to create results.  This problem can be a product of slow metabolism, not enough workouts, or even too many workouts!  However, the “no result” problem can be combated but will take time.  There are numerous tactics you can use in order to see the effects of exercise.

First of all, it’s necessary to understand that just because you work out regularly doesn’t mean your body can handle unhealthy food.  Of course you are burning extra calories but if you are expecting to see weight loss or larger muscles, you have to have a healthy diet.  Protein and carbohydrates are two specific nutrients that you absolutely need if you’re going to exercise.  Without them, your body will not have enough energy to do what it needs to do, like burn calories and build muscles.  Lean meats and whole grains are where you should be obtaining these nutrients from.

Results will appear quicker if you work out at high intensities for a short amount of time.  30-40 minutes is the perfect amount of time to exercise.  Working out at a high intensity after building up endurance will benefit your body because more calories will burn, muscles will be worked harder, and your endurance will continue to increase.  However, if you are looking to mainly burn fat, low intensity work outs may work the best.  At high intensities your body is mainly burning carbohydrates where as fat is burned during low intensity work outs.

You will not see results if you don’t keep yourself hydrated.  Water is essential in everyone’s diet, especially when they exercise.  If you think drinking 8 cups of water before a work out will work, you’re wrong.  It takes a while for the body to actually absorb the water (into your muscles, for example!) and will not benefit you immediately before a work out.

Try to fit strength training into your work out routines.  Cardio does help increase muscle mass, but not as much as strength training does.  Every time you lift weights, aim to increase the pounds you lift even if it’s just a few pounds.  If you’re lifting the same amount over and over again, your muscles will get used to it and will stop changing eventually.  Lifting weights also burns calories, especially if you lift them after a cardio work out!

In many instances, people quit working out.  They get bored, don’t have enough time, or lose motivation because they just aren’t seeing results.  To avoid boredom, switch your work outs.  Go on a walk/run outside one day and use an elliptical machine the next.  Take a class at your local gym or invest in some work out videos that you can do in your own home.  Experiment with biking, rollerblades, skateboards, jump ropes—anything you can find!  Try out a sport like basketball, soccer, baseball or football.  There are many, many options for exercise.  It is extremely hard to fit exercise in a busy schedule, especially when you are tired.  To combat this, think about your schedule at the beginning of each week. Write down any possible open time that you can exercise, even if it’s only for 20 minutes.  This will help you plan and stick to your routine if you tell yourself ahead of time that you’re going to do it.  If being tired is a problem, think of how you’re going to feel post-workout.  If you want to quit because of a lack of results, don’t give up!  It does take time, and if you are doing everything right then you will see the effects sooner or later.

Brianna Elliott is a student at the University of Wisconsin – Stout and a regular contributor at ProbioticSmart.com and PSCLife.com – a leading retailer of ThreeLac and Align Digestive Care.


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