Whatever your fitness goal may be, there is one common thread which ties them all together, training intensely and planning intelligently. Not to mention, the most important aspect, a diet that goes along with your goal. With all of that in mind here are some tips to focus on to accelerate and make your results sustainable in the long run.
Time: Be Efficient
Workout routines don’t have to be 3 hour affairs. In fact, lengthening the time of the workout can lead to poor productivity and results. Any effective exercise program has to be simple and short and you do not have endless energy to carry out an exercise of longer duration. Your levels of blood sugar, aka the energy used to exercise with weights or any intense exercise, begin to empty past thirty minutes, so it is crucial to get down to business. That time spent lifting weights should not exceed 50 minutes to an hour, which is the time when your energy levels are basically empty and your hormone levels are no longer stimulated. Now, cardio tacked onto a lifting program can go over this limit but lifting for 90 minutes is ridiculous.
Switch Up the Routine
The principle of progression is the main one to keep in mind, unless you want your results to stagnate. Progress is the key to everything. For a while the effort of a new routing forces your body to change in an attempt to adapt to this increased exercise. However, your body will adapt to this change overtime and become used to the stress induced. Utilizing a scheme of progression helps to keep the body guessing and forces it to change in order to try to adapt. If your body adapts completely to a routine, the results stop coming.
You can challenge your body by shortening rest times, adding new lifts, heavier weights, reducing rest times, sprinting instead of jogging, etc. You do not have to kill yourself and go from newbie to advanced athlete training in a short period of time though, the key in the progression is to do it gradually, slowly but steadily.
Know When to Rest
Rest is a wholly important yet highly underrated aspect of training. Rest on a day to day basis, can come in the form of sleep, which is when your body recovers and grows the most. Without proper sleep, you’ll get nowhere. There is also rest from the longer term perspective in the form of taking days off each week from working out or taking a week or two off after months of hard training. How and when to take rest days will be dictated by many factors such as, the level of intensity of your workout, your mental and physical state, your levels of activity other than exercise, and lagging indicators such as fatigue and how many hours of sleep you’re getting.
All these components must be taken into account when determining your days off. For example, sprints should not be more than twice per week (for most people) since the stress that is puts on the body is so great, that recovery time is necessary and usually two days in between sessions is enough to ensure full recovery. You have to find the balance between not overtraining nor half assing it either. Rest well can mean everything from getting or not getting results. Finally, remember that a good diet alongside these tips is essential if you want to get the best results, and also the fastest.