Are you a creature of habit? If so, you're not alone. When it comes to exercise, many of us head for the same class at the gym, log the same workout on the elliptical, and run the same route every time we go out. While regular exercise is good for you, it’s also important to vary your fitness routine. Both your body and brain will reap benefits when you try new activities; it’s the key to stimulating different muscle groups and preventing boredom.
Here are a few benefits that come with mixing up your exercise routine.
Break Through Plateaus
When you do the same activity all the time, your body gets used to it and becomes very efficient. Eventually, that adaptation will mean you burn fewer calories even when you’re doing the same amount of exercise. If you challenge your body in a way that it’s not used to your body will have to work harder as it adjusts to the new activity, which means that you’ll burn more calories.
There’s a reason why you get hurt when you put your body through the same motions over and over again. This type of injury often occurs from doing lots of repetitive motions, such as running, hitting a tennis ball, kicking (in kickboxing or martial arts classes), etc. By mixing things up, you give those overused muscles, joints, and ligaments a chance to rest and recover before putting them into action again.
Build New Muscles
For most people, the best approach in exercise is to do a little of everything. This approach helps you to build a strong heart (for endurance), muscular legs, and a powerful upper body. You’ll look great and be physically ready to take on a variety of sports and activities.
If you find yourself literally counting down the seconds left in your elliptical workout or can hardly stand the sight of the same streets as you run down them, it’s time to switch up your routine. Keep your workouts from getting stale by constantly trying new things. At Evolve Fitness Studios we offer more than 80 classes each week so there are plenty to choose from so you can have a total change of pace.
Meet New Workout Partners
One of the best ways to stay engaged with exercise and committed to a regular schedule of activity is to find people you want to work out with. Join a running group, try a Pilates or Broga class with a friend, or bring a friend to join you for personal training as a duo.
Keep Your Brain Healthy
Exercise is essential for keeping your brain sharp and helping to prevent memory loss. Learning new skills also helps keep your neurons in better shape. When you learn a new exercise activity, it's a win-win for your body and your brain. The key is to choose activities that keep you engaged; don’t pick things that you can do like a braindead zombie. You don’t need to overexert yourself to reap the benefits of exercise for your brain and memory, but you should exercise regularly. Research shows that when you are active you have a lower risk for diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension, and stroke, all of which can affect memory.
Get Excited About Exercise, Again!
When you start feeling dread rather than enthusiasm for working out, it's time to switch things up. It might take a little sampling of different activities before you find the right mix that works for you, but stick with it and you'll find something you enjoy. Just make sure you include several different types of activities each week and swap out something new every once in a while to keep your routine fresh.
For many of us, the start of the year brings the desire to get back in shape, or take up a fitness routine for the first time. If that is true for you, watch this video for a little advice on how to have a successful start so your resolution doesn't fade away.
Like what you see? Give us a call today for a tour of Evolve Fitness Studios. You'll quickly see how we are different. 541-844-1295
We've all heard that water is good for us, and to be honest, most of us probably tune this out to some degree. But, as you are working on your overall health and fitness, drinking water is an essential component to reaching your goals. Here are just a few of the many reasons why water is vital for attaining good health.
1. Water lubricates the joints
In our bodies, cartilage, which is found in joints and the disks of the spine, contains approximately 80 percent water. If you don't drink enough water, this can lead to long-term dehydration that reduces the joints' shock-absorbing ability and increases the likelihood of joint pain.
2. Water delivers oxygen throughout the body
Oxygen is carried throughout the different parts of our body through our blood, which happens to be more than 90 percent water.
3. Water boosts skin health and beauty
When you don't drink enough water, your skin can become more vulnerable to skin disorders and premature wrinkling. Dehydration can make your skin look dull, whereas drinking plenty of water can help give your skin a glow.
4. Water cushions the brain, spinal cord, and other sensitive tissues
A lack of water can affect your brain structure and function. Water is also involved in the production of hormones and neurotransmitters, so when you suffer prolonged dehydration, you might begin to experience problems with thinking and reasoning.
5. Water regulates body temperature
Water that is stored in the middle layers of the skin comes to the skin's surface as sweat when the body heats up. As it evaporates, it cools the body. Some scientists have suggested that when there is too little water in the body, heat storage increases and you are less able to tolerate heat strain. Having a lot of water in your body may reduce physical strain if heat stress occurs during exercise.
6. The digestive system depends on water
For your bowel to work properly, it needs water. But, when you are dehydrated, you can experience digestive problems, constipation, and an overly acidic stomach. This increases the risk of heartburn and stomach ulcers.
7. Water helps maintain blood pressure
When we don't have enough water in our bodies, our blood can become thicker, increasing blood pressure.
8. Water makes minerals and nutrients accessible
Minerals and different nutrients often dissolve in water, which makes it possible for them to reach different parts of the body where they are needed.
9. Water boosts performance during exercise
If you've ever felt sluggish during a workout, it might be because you weren't getting enough water. Some scientists have proposed that consuming more water might enhance performance during strenuous activity. This is especially true for activities lasting longer than 30 minutes.
10. Water helps with weight loss
Water may help with weight loss if it is consumed instead of sweetened juices and sodas. "Preloading" with water before meals can also help prevent overeating by creating a sense of fullness.
So how much water is enough?
How much water we need to consume is influenced by a number of factors, even the climate. The amount of water needed each day varies from person to person, depending on how active they are, how much they sweat, and so on. While there is no fixed amount of water that must be consumed daily, there is general agreement on what a healthy fluid intake is.
According to the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the average recommended daily intake of water from both food and drink is:
For men: Around 125 ounces
For women: Around 91 ounces
About 80 percent of this should come from drinks, including water, and the rest will be from food.
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