Simple Ways to Make Exercise Easier (and get better results)
Make exercise easier! I can’t do the workout for you but here’s how I may be able to help! Here’s how to get better at gymming (even at home)!
This works for more challenging workouts, but don’t get in the habit of overcompensating after exercise. You know those disappointing numbers on the treadmill after you’ve busted your buns doing a mile? They don’t lie!
So this isn’t about eating so much you’re blowing results. But there are times when before or after exercise a little more (of the right) fuel may do you good.
There’s nothing worse than going to shower after a workout with subpar products. Stop buying sample size junk and get minis of your favorite products.
I was guilty of this for a long time! I’d buy cheap drugstore quality items for my gym bag or put hotel (not 5-star at that time) lotions and shampoos in my gym bag. I felt like I had had a “gym” shower and it felt very different from getting ready at home.
Make a playlist for every activity … intervals? Here’s Mine
This is especially important if you’re rhythmic, but I don’t know many people who are not motivated or moved by music. If you can find music you love that has a beats per minute that matches the tempo your feet hit the ground or push the pedals, you’ve found a pace partner.
When I do interval training or a “tempo” run (a little faster than I like to go) here’s a list of songs I love and use:
- Detroit Medley- Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band
- I’m Still Standing – Elton John
- I Knew the Bride – Dave Edmonds
- Only the Good Die Young – Billy Joel
- Betty Lou’s Getting’ Out Tonight – Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band
- Swing The Mood – Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers
- Feel Like a Number – Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band
- Shout – Billy Joel
- The Bitch is Back – Elton John
- Paradise By The Dashboard Lights – Meatloaf
- Dancing with Myself – Billy Idol
- For cooling down:
- (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher – Jackie Wilson
The only way to get better is train better. If you’re hanging out with someone who’s got motivation problems, who stops frequently, who is slower than you are, tell them you love them by you’ve got to go do YOUR workout.
You need to feel like someone is two-to-three steps in front of you, or beside you, but pushing you in pace.
Don’t mistake this for doing someone else’s workout. You need to know YOUR heart rate, your exertion level and your personal goal for each workout. You don’t get fit doing random acts of exercise. Some days the purpose of exercise is recovery, or a long endurance day when your heart rate zone should be lower.
Don’t show up to a class and do the instructor’s workout in a random drop in session. Know your plan for the day and the week and do that. Options are not your problem. I used to struggle with this riding with my partner. He’s an intensity junkie. He’d push me. Yet it was Sunday, my long slow day. Going hard and intense blew the foundation of endurance I was supposed to get on those days. Know what you need and how to get it. Then go looking for the partner!
5. Start crossing your arms.
Inevitably, there will be some Joe sitting on a piece of strength training equipment you want with a cell phone, scrolling between sets. Do not, I repeat, do not be intimidated. Ask if you can work in or stand with your arms crossed in close proximity to the machine.
You can assure him or her that you’ll just be a minute (shorter than or the same time of rest/scroll) and give it right back.
6. Leave the cell phone in the locker.
See above: if Joe fit was busy scrolling between sets parked on equipment and you didn’t like it: don’t be Joe. That is all.
7. Have a back up plan.
Whether you can’t do squats and lunges, or the line at the leg press is longer than the line for the ski lift in Vail at New Year’s, always have a couple ways to work the same muscle groups. No waiting on the gym floor. Try these so that you can keep your workout moving the way it should no matter who is scrolling through his phone on the machine you want or what joint issues you’ve got!
- Instead of leg press: Hack squats, vertical squat, squats
- Instead of squats:Hip bridge using a ball, ham curls using a ball
- Instead of Chest Press machine: Dumbbell or Cable press
- Instead of Seated Row machine: Bent Over Row
- Instead of Lat Pulldown: Bent Arm Pull over, straight arm pulldown cable
8. Keep essential oils in your gym bag.
You know my girl for all things essential oils is Dr. Mariza Snyder. You can get some of her favorite recipes quick and easy! Listen here to a recent Flipping 50 podcast for some of her best tips. Or grab one of her amazing books for moms and hormone balance.
Here’s the truth, without the drama. What you wear on your skin every day matters (so does what you sleep on for hours every night). You’re breathing deeper and you’re absorbing it into your body. You don’t want to use toxic dryer sheets. If it smells or has stains… here’s my go-to. Since I started using MyGreenFills I’ve NEVER looked back.
Got reservations about this? SO did I. What’s more convenient though ? Getting it right to your door or going to the store? What’s more feel good? Buying a plastic jug every time you buy? or having one to refill? Helping get prostitutes off the street is pretty amazing too. You can learn more about this company here. I’ve got my son and his girlfriend started on this too.
It’s not the chemical crap we grew up with. It’s essential oils and smells you enjoy with all the good feels.
10. Take your post workout smoothie with you.
The best time for your post workout smoothie is between 60-120 minutes after your high intensity workout. Make it ahead and pack it in an insulated bag or cooler. Skip the sugar-packed options on shelves and made at the local smoothie shop.
11. Germ phobe? Wear gloves during workouts.
Combat slippery equipment and germs too. The humidity goes up when the bicep count does in January. Try gloves, they’ll keep you safe and make you feel badass too. Keep your hands away from your face, skip using the club’s towels, and bring your own (anti-microbial).
12. Don’t do strength and cardio at the same time.
Form falls apart fast. The rapid results you thought you were going to get evaporate. I know, I know, your trainer tells you to do bootcamp with him or wants you to do a blend of the two. Guess what? Bootcamp style workouts have finally fallen out of the top 20 trends in fitness. We see more injuries than results. Focus on moving fast with good form when you do intervals and doing slower controlled muscle work to fatigue when you strength train. Multitasking during exercise is over-rated for hormone balance.
13. Get your gut feeling good.
So many women avoid exercise, or exercise in public because of embarrassing gas or bloating that keeps them from even starting to exercise. Though exercise may improve it you want to focus on two things. First, get immediate support. We’re all exposed to stress, varying scheduled, and to foods that aren’t ideal for us.
I use Atrantil when I travel, gave it to my 92-year old mom, and actually used it at home after dinner the other night. I felt better in a couple hours and was normal the next morning.
Next, if gas or bloating happen frequently, your body is telling you it doesn’t like something you’re eating. It’s time to test your best foods. That bloating, distention, and what you think is belly fat may be sign for a change in your eating habits.