Written by Ann Cooper

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Sweat now, shine later

Making Working out FUN!

Working out can come in many forms, and there are countless ways to do so while having fun AND crushing your goals. First, the most important thing to do is to get rid of excuses! Some of the most common excuses when it comes to working out are, “I don’t have time”, or “I do not like exercising”. Well friends, there are several ways to get around these excuses.

There are 168 hours in one week, and in order to implement a healthy and active lifestyle into your weekly routine, you only need roughly 2-3 of those hours per week…at most. This leaves you 165 hours per week to get your other tasks done. With 2-3 hours per week, you are able to implement a 30 minute workout session, 6 days per week, or a 40 minute workout session 5 days per week.

Now that we’ve gotten rid of the first excuse, let’s move on to the next…

If you do not like working out, first ask yourself, “what type of exercising is it that I do not like?” Most people associate working out and exercise with lifting weights at the gym, taking a class at the gym, or spending hours each week jumping from cardio machine to cardio machine. However, it can be anything but that. Working out can include various activities and fun hobbies that can be incorporated in your routine. It’s important to find ways to workout daily as it keeps us thinking clearer and keeps our bodies healthy from the inside out, along with several other benefits that are attached to daily exercise.

Hiking or biking with friends can be one of the best ways to exercise, without feeling like you are doing so. This is particularly true when you have beautiful scenery to look at and a new environment that you may not be used to. When our brain is focused on scenery, a nice conversation, or a new location, our brain will not focus on dreaded cardio as much.

Dancing is another great way to exercise, and to burn a ton of calories. Whether this means enjoying a night out with friends, or taking a dance class, this activity can be used as your daily dose of exercise. If you are serious about making this your form of cardio, consider wearing a heart rate monitor or fit bit so you are able to track your calorie burn and steps!

Water sports, rock-climbing, cleaning the house, playing volleyball, throwing a football, etc. can all be used to keep your heart healthy! If these activities do not seem appealing to you, there are many other ways to make working out fun.

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Exercise does not have to be going out and doing different activities each day. If you choose to work out in a gym, consider changing around your workout split, rep range, or training method to switch around your routine. This will challenge you and make your exercise program more interesting! If there is no plan going into the gym, then there is no challenge or structure, which can make it hard to stick to. Consider alternating between high rep and low rep weeks. For example, one week your leg day will be high rep more moderate weight. The next week would be low rep and heavier weights. This will also give your body a rest so you are recovered to increase intensity the following week. You might also decide to implement fast-paced conditioning routines such as adding mountain climbers, sled pushes, battle ropes, and more in between sets to challenge yourself. You could time yourself each round to beat your time during the next workout. This will set a short term goal for yourself to motivate you each and every workout. These short terms goals may lead up to a bigger goal you have for yourself.

If you need an extra push, try hiring a personal trainer. This will take the pressure off of you when deciding which workout split is right for you, and allow you to have help and accountability. However, this can be costly if you are planning to do this multiple times per week. If so, try splitting the time between a trainer and joining an exercise class such as cycling, Zumba, kickboxing, swimming, or Pilates. Going to a class can help encourage you to work harder than if you were by yourself, since you have other people with you working hard as well.

If setting a goal gives you energy to push harder each workout, then start setting multiple goals to strive for. One goal that works great for many people who struggle with motivation is entering a race such as a 5k or a triathlon. That way, there is a deadline in place. Having a specific deadline is helpful since you do not want to disappoint yourself, and you would like to do well. Possibly, through this you could find activities that are enjoyable for you.

If goal setting, activities, and group training does not work for you, taking a couple of weeks off of strenuous and mundane exercise might reset your body and mind and get you re-motivated. Sometimes we get caught in the same routine that it becomes tedious. Taking a week or two off to focus on stretching, low intensity yoga, and massage therapy could give you the break that you need to come back stronger than before. Breaks are not being lazy, but rather listening to your body and mind when you need the rest to recuperate.

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Let’s face it, fitness and working out is not for everyone, but there are so many ways to be healthy while still having fun! Our bodies are meant for movement, for activity, and to feel alive. Our bodies are also meant to eat the right foods to fuel ourselves, and to have treats now and then for sanity. Mental health is just as important as physical health! Surrounding oneself with positive energy and new thrilling experiences will create progressive mental health, which can accelerate ones physical health as well, studies show.

Healthy and clean eating may be used as motivation to push harder in the gym. Once you know the clean eating has been added into the mix, it is more than necessary to get great workouts in as well to put the puzzle together. Diet is in fact the hardest part of living a healthy lifestyle, as we are constantly surrounded by fatty foods, alcoholic beverages, and sweet treats. It is important to make the diet fun too, and find ways to spice meals up. Getting creative in the kitchen and putting together different healthy ingredients, spices, and low calorie condiments will make dieting seem like nothing.

Try tracking macronutrients and adding in small treats such as healthy pancakes, low calorie popcorn, or dark chocolate. As long as these foods fit into your macronutrient goals within the day, then you will continue to make progress while satisfying your cravings. The only way for a diet to fit your lifestyle is if you are not being too strict on yourself, and if you are enjoying the foods you are eating. This is why getting fancy in the kitchen is important! Decorate your foods, make them look visually appealing and exciting for your taste buds, and living a healthy lifestyle will be no match for you!

On top of a proper diet…try including healthy supplements into your daily routine. AMPD Nutrition products are 100% natural, and not only provide a wide variety of nutritional benefits, but can also encourage your WORKOUTS! AMPD Pre-E can help you take your workouts to the next level WITHOUT the use of caffeine or artificial fillers. No crash, no jitters – just clean ingredients to provide you with an energy boost!

The most important thing is finding what works for you. We are all diverse and have different needs, and it is essential to develop a plan that fits you!

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