"Let’s all take a second to think about the patterns and routines we fall into with our workouts… do you have a specific cardio machine you go to nearly every time you walk through the gym doors? Has it gotten to the point where if somebody is on “your” machine, it makes you downright angry? Doesn’t everybody know that the elliptical on the far left is yours?!
Now, I say this mostly kidding, but there have certainly been days when I catch myself feeling frustrated that the machine I normally start my workouts with is taken by somebody else. I think we can all relate to times when we simply get caught up in the same routine for far too long. Things at the gym start to feel… a bit stale, boring, and quite frankly, not very effective anymore.
Of course, we all have days where our bodies are downright exhausted, and a rest day is needed. I’m talking about something different, though. I’m talking about getting into a rut for the better part of 2-3 weeks, when the gym isn’t something that you look forward to, and it actually becomes more of a chore. It is almost like you’ve hit a plateau and feel like you are making little to no progress. I know I have definitely experienced these feelings in the past, but through trial and error, I have picked up several tips and tricks that have helped make going to the gym (or working out in general) a moe exciting and fun thing to do!
1.) Change up the scenery!
If you normally run on a treadmill at Milestone, perhaps try going for a walk/run on the track, or even out the front door of the gym over to the park across the street and back. Looking around at nature, as opposed to having a monitor screen directly in front of your face, can be such a welcomed change. Something I’ve struggled with in the past is feeling like I have to “match up” to the workouts I’ve done earlier in the week. Although there are benefits to being able to track your exact distance, speed, and incline on a run, those numbers and speeds can sometimes turn into a double edged sword. I would often get down on myself if I wasn’t running at the incline or speed I had run earlier that week…
But guess what?! Every day is a unique day, and your body will go through waves of feeling recovered and ready to push it, and also needing some down time to recover and heal up. Running in a different setting is a great way to get out of your mind for a while and focus in on how your body is feeling.
2. Listen to some throwback tunes!
I was doing a bit of spring cleaning last week, and found an old Ipod nano in my bedroom. (Gosh, was middle school really that long ago?!) As I was scrolling through some old songs, a huge rush of nostalgia and fun filled memories hit me, and I couldn’t help but smile and laugh to myself for a while in my room. And yes, although some of these songs are downright embarrassing to announce to the world now, I absolutely loved them when I was younger! And when you’re working out, if a song has a great beat and puts you in an awesome mood, that’s all that matters, right? Here is a brief list of some of my favorite throwbacks… (Do you have any throwback favorites? Post them in the comments below so we can all add to our playlists!)
- Chamillionaire ft. Crazy Bone – Ridin
- Usher ft. Ludacris, Lil John – Yeah!
- Daddy Yankee – Gasolina
- DMX – Party Up
- Destiny’s Child – Jumpin’ Jumpin’
- Ludacris – What’s Your Fantasy
- Nelly ft. Paul Wall – Grillz
And I could keep going! I think the greatest part of listening to a throwback playlist, especially with songs you haven’t heard in years, is that it will inevitably bring up some hilarious memories. Before you know it, you’ll be smiling, jamming out, and having a blast with whatever workout you’re doing!
3. Take an exercise class!
There are an unbelievable amount of different workout classes out there that you could venture in some time, especially if you don’t feel like thinking of a workout for you to do. Milestone offers over 270 different group exercise classes on land and in the water, inclouding yoga, step-classes, kickboxing, body breakthrough, dance class, tabata….I mean, I could go on and on! Taking a class allows you to try something maybe you’ve never even considered trying before. For example, the other week I took a kickboxing class. Who would have thought, me, of all people would be in a kickboxing class?! Well, let me just say that I thoroughly enjoyed learning how to kickbox even though I looked like I had no idea what I was doing. It was something new for me to try and I had fun while doing it!
I highly recommend walking into Milestone, looking at the class schedule, picking one and going for it! Being in a class environment has so many advantages that I wasn’t really even aware of until I started going to some. For example, I meet so many new people in classes because normally I am out in the weight room doing my own thing. Another benefit is the instructor plays some awesome pump up tunes and blasts the volume to get everyone fired up! Last, but not least, you get to go to the gym without having to plan what you are going to do and also know you’ll still get a good workout in regardless. There are some days where my mind just can’t think straight and planning a workout is about the last thing I want to do.
4. Find a workout partner!
We all know that working out by yourself can get super boring right?! I mean there are some days where I work out by myself, which is fine, but lets be honest it isn’t as fun as when you have someone there pushing you and keeping you going! If you are someone who goes to the gym, exercises by yourself every day and is feeling pretty blahhh lately about your workouts, then I have the fix for you… FIND A WORKOUT BUDDY! Ask a friend to come to the gym with you one day, whether it is to take a class with them or have them do a workout you’ve written up.
I love to have someone to workout with me because I know they will push me to be my best. If they see me struggling, they encourage me to keep going even if it is painful! Plus, I love to motivate people, so when someone is with me it makes my workout more exciting, especially when you see them set a PR (personal record) on a lift or exercise. My workout buddy is normally my mom, which I absolutely love so much. We are called “mother and daughter” for the most part around the gym or even sometimes “the dynamic duo”. Watching my mom accomplish things she didn’t even think she could do makes me so incredibly happy. I get to see the excitement on her face in disbelief that she just lifted heavier weight than she ever has before in her life!
Also, if you are a competitive person then having a workout partner will benefit you. You’ll be able to fuel off of each other and push one another farther than if you were by yourself!
I hope you all find these tips helpful for you if you are feeling like you are in a slump these days!"
To book a personal training session with Miranda Mercke and learn some new ways to help you get out of your "workout slump", call 896.3900 x 115.