JUST FOR THE HEALTH OF IT: 12 tips for a better workout

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First Posted: 9/9/2013

A great tip is an awesome thing, whether it’s great tailor or an undiscovered restaurant. Unfortunately, few things in life are sure things. But, with an expanded knowledge base, you can’t miss. And the secrets to success are all based on knowledge.

Use these 12 tips to fuel your results:

1. Your abs are like any other muscle – work them and give them rest. Train them two to three times per week.

2. Stay loose. Stretching is like flossing; we all know it is important, but we don’t do it often enough. As you age, hold your stretches longer. Rule of thumb: stretch half the time you exercise per week. So, if you workout three hours per week, stretch for at least 90 minutes per week.

3. Time saver: shorter, more intense workouts are usually better than long, drawn-out sessions. This keeps cortisol levels down, which is a stress hormone.

4. Order in the gym. When doing various pieces of equipment in the same workout, choose dumbbells first, then barbells, and do machines last. Also, work larger muscles before smaller ones.

5. Got milk? Drinking a pint of low fat chocolate milk can have the same effect as expensive supplements after your workout.

6. Skip your favorites. You’re cutting yourself short if you only do exercises you like. Work on your weakest links. This will ramp up your results.

7. Rest as needed. No need for timed workout periods. Resting only as needed is one way to save time in the gym.

8. More in less time. As you progress in the gym, try to do more work in the same amount of time. This will ensure progress.

9. Stay off the DL. Cut your running time in half every four to five weeks. This will allow your body to recover adequately.

10. Keep your head up. When sprinting up hills, keep you head up. This will allow your lungs to expand properly.

11. Apply physiology. Lifting weights with your legs will decrease your running time. A study in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that eight weeks of resistance training improved experienced runners’ 5K times by 30 seconds.

12. New Year, new you. If your resolution this year includes getting into shape, don’t wait until January. Start exercising twice a week now. By January, you’ll be ready for the five-day-a-week commitment that you set out to do.

Leverage Fitness Studio specializes in personal training. Private and group training and membership rates are available. For more information, call 570.338.2386.

-Tim Hlivia is the owner of Leverage Fitness Studio in Forty Fort.