Turn up the Intensity!

So... tell me the truth. Have you been treating your body and mind right by working out? Come on.. don't lie.. Good job! I knew you have. Just testing you. I know I have been super busy lately, have you? Today we are going to talk about using your precious time wisely and getting a little more out of your daily workout. When you are doing your workout how long is it taking you? Shouldn't be more than one hour max! Are you sweating and out of breath? Have a hard time talking to you workout buddy? Or are you on the treadmill, watching TV or reading a book or magazine? Yes. I am talking to you! If low intensity is what is going on most days, take that workout schedule and throw it in the trash! Starting now, you are going to turn up the intensity! It will make your workouts shorter and burn more calories overall! Ready? Let's get going....

Three tips for getting the most out of your sweat sessions:

1. Rest Less. Say you are doing chest presses, do your set and rest and talk to a friend for a bit then come back for the other set. You are WASTING time! Keep up the intensity by only resting 30-60 seconds between your sets if you need a break. Otherwise, rest your muscle group you just used (this case is chest) and do some jumping jacks or lunges or squats that focuses on a whole different muscle group. This keeps your intensity and heart rate elevated which blasts more fat calories! Plus, you will finish your workout much faster than you would with all that rest!!

2. Ramp up your resistance and cardio intensity. Ask yourself (and be truthful) if you're working out at a correct intensity to get the most benefit from your workout. Not sure if you are giving it 100%? For cardio, you can use an RPE scale. RPE stands for Rate of Perceived Exertion and is rated 1-10 with 1 being so easy and 10 being very hard. Here is a chart for you to look at:

When you are doing interval workouts, you should have your high intensity at a 8,9, or 10 for a short amount of time, then for the "rest" part of the interval be around a 1,2, or 3. (more on interval training coming soon!) If you are out for a run or walk and are doing what is known as steady state cardio, your intensity should be around a 5 or 6. While doing resistance training your last reps should be hard! Say you are doing 12 reps of bicep curls. It should be getting very difficult toward the last 3 reps. You can still do them with good form, but if you can go over the 12 reps, then you weren't lifting hard enough! Your body tends to be lazy unless you really push it!

3. Finally, seek help from an experienced person, like a trainer or someone who really knows their stuff in the gym. I hate when I go to teach class and notice people sacrificing their time to be at the gym and not getting the most out of their workout or using improper form. If you are going to "work hard", make sure you are not hardly working!!

**And a side note.. research is showing it now takes an average of 8 weeks for a new habit, such as fitness, to stick! It the meantime, fake it till you make it!