Physical fitness is paramount to our health and wellbeing. Numerous studies have shown that without taking care of our bodies, we can run into all sorts of issues from physical disease to mental illness. The good news is that there are plenty of strategies that can help you with boosting your fitness performance. Just keep reading the post below to find the best ones.
Set Yourself Specific Targets
If your fitness target is something like: ‘to go on a run today’ you may not be getting the most from your workouts. After all, it could be a fast or a slow run; and it could be a single mile or 10KM, not to mention that there is no specifying your time or heart rates.
With that in mind, setting yourself a particular target when working can be a lot more beneficial. In fact, by being specific, you will get several advantages, including knowing very clearly if you have met your target for the day, which can be very motivating indeed. Additionally, smaller specific targets are what can be used as a stepping stone to more extensive and more significant goals. You know, those big overarching ones that really show that your fitness progress has moved along.
One thing in particular that can help when setting and monitoring your fitness targets is to invest in a tracker. The idea being that these will automatically monitor things like heart rate, distance, and speed and allow you to accurately get a sense of your progress on a broader scale.
Fuel Your Body Right
You wouldn’t expect a car to drive at optimum if you filled the tank with the wrong gas, so why would you expect your body to reach peak fitness if you don’t also feed it right?Now, that isn’t to say that you have to take on an extreme diet, especially one that excludes a particular food group, which can work well, to begin with, but are very hard to maintain over the long term.
Instead, the best way to fuel your body correctly for fitness is to have a varied and nutritious diet that is a mix of foods including grains, meats or other proteins, dairy, fruits, vegetables, and herbs and spices.
In particular, many herbs and spices can be incredibly beneficial for fitness. A subject you can get some actionable advice on these herbs for athletes post, online. Oh, and if you have trouble with joint swelling that gets in the way of your workouts, be sure to pay particular attention to the section on turmeric!
Heading to a running club for a chat with the girls is all well and good, but is it the best way to maximize your fitness performance? Similarly, if you are more concerned with the constant influx of Whatsapp messages on your phone than the form of your squats in the gym, you can’t expect to get the best results!
To that end, removing as many distractions as possible is very important if you wish to maximize your fitness performance. That means if you have young children, popping them in the gym creche or getting your other half to take care of them while you work out is best. While, if you spend more time socializing at running, setting up a coffee or wine date for after will allow you to focus solely on your workout.
Finally, if distraction in the gym is the biggest issue for you, turn your phone to aeroplane mode. Then you can still access your music but won’t be distracted by all those social media notifications!
If you adore riding your bike in the open air or zooming past an opponent on roller skates at the derby, you may not have considered the benefits of weight training to your overall fitness performance.
However, the activities mentioned above, as well as all other exercises, requires the use of your muscles. Therefore if you lose muscle mass, it will affect your performance in other areas. To that end, strength training, or lifting weights as it is otherwise known is an essential aspect of boosting fitness performance.
There are other benefits associated with this activity as well, including a reduction in injuries, and a boost for bone density, which will also help you stay working at optimum performance when it comes to fitness.
If you are still holding each warm-up stretch before moving right into the next, you may not be preparing your body in the best way for your fitness activity. Instead, try using a dynamic approach to stretching before you work out, where you move smoothly from one position into another.
One of the most significant benefits of this kind of warming up is that it helps to raise your body temperature slowly, so there is less shock to the system. Additionally, dynamic stretches can help boost your joints range of movement, something that will help you to avoid injury and can also help you to attain your top performance when working out.
Keep Your Goals in Mind
Another way to boost fitness performance is to have apparent goals, as to why you are working out in the first place. Then you can bring this motivation to mind, when you consider skipping a session, or when you might not be pushing as hard as you should.
Of course, for goals to be an effective form of motivation, they have to be meaningful for the individual. That means, what works for me might not work for you and vice versa. With that in mind, it is worth thinking about what the longer-term benefits of working out are for you and applying them specifically to your situation.
For example, instead of saying that you want to stay fit as you get older, you may note that you want to be able to run a 10K when you are 60. It is these concrete goals that will help keep you focused even on the more challenging days.
Apart from motivation, fun and enjoyment can help us to keep working out enough to reach peak fitness. After all, if you pick a sport or activity that you hate, you are much less likely to commit to it each day.
That is why you must carefully select activities not just for their fitness boosting effects, but also because you genuinely have a good time doing them.
Fortunately, there are so many types of exercises and activities you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding one that you love. Remember too, that within each type of fitness activity there are often different kinds and levels. Therefore, as you progress, you can swap to something that will be a little more challenging, but you know that you still have an excellent chance to enjoy it.
Train Hard (most of the time)
One of the best routes to optimum fitness is to train hard. That doesn’t mean that you have to spend your life working out, though. Instead, there are some activities like HITT that allow you to spend less time exercising, but also reap the benefits of a very intense workout.
HIIT or High-intensity interval training switches up regular interval training onto its head. That is it has longer bursts of intensive work and only very short rest intervals. The benefits of working out in this way are that it keeps your heart rate high, and so boost endurance, muscle strength, and aerobic fitness.
The great thing about the HITT approach is that it can be applied to just about any form of exercise from running to weightlifting. Therefore you don’t have to change up the type of your favorite exercise, just the way you rest during your sessions.
Take It Easy (some of the time)
Of course, while working hard is essential if you want to maximize your fitness, it’s also vital that you take it easy, at least some of the time as well. The reason that it is so critical to take rests is that your body must have enough to repair the muscle fibers that tear as you work out. If you don’t provide enough time for this, you can risk overstraining your body and overtraining, something that will prevent you from reaching your fitness goals.
With that in mind, building in some rest days into your workout schedule is the smartest idea. Although, before you get the idea that you can chill in bed or day or spend some quality time on the couch with a pizza, gentle exercise is totally OK. To that end, some slow flow yoga, or a moderate walk in the countryside with the family is usually the best option.
Make the most of Each Workout
In addition to their bottom boosting effects, there’s another reason why exercises like squats are so popular. That reason is that they are what is known as compound exercises. Compound exercises are ones that use more than one set of muscle groups while they are being done.
Of course, the more muscles you use, the more energy you need to expend, not to mention the fact that by using compound exercises you can build muscles in less time than if you only did isolation exercises. Therefore, if you want to achieve peak physical fitness, adding some compound exercises into your schedule is a brilliant idea.