Tips

Workout Tips from Our Fav Fitness Girls

Fitness Girl

Everyone loves tips from their favorite fitness girl (or woman!), so we scoured the internet and pulled together our top 5 fav fitness girl tips!

1. Set Realistic Goals

"Don't strive for perfection or an improbable goal that can't be met," says Kara Thompson, spokesperson for the International Health Racquet and Sportsclub Association (IHRSA).  "Focus instead on increasing healthy behaviors."  

In other words, don't worry if you can't run a 5K just yet. Make it a habit to walk 15 minutes a day, and add time, distance, and intensity from there. 

2. Use the Buddy System

Find a friend or relative whom you like and trust who also wants to establish a healthier lifestyle, suggests personal trainer and fitness guru Chris Mumm.  "Encourage one another. Exercise together. Use this as an opportunity to enjoy one another's company and to strengthen the relationship."

3.  Make Your Plan Fit Your Life

Too busy to get to the gym?  Tennis star Martina Navratilova, knows a thing or two about being busy and staying fit.  "You don't need fancy exercise gear and gyms to get fit." 

If you've got floor space, try simple floor exercises to target areas such as the hips and buttocks, legs and thighs, and chest and arms (like push-ups, squats, and lunges). Aim for 10-12 repetitions of each exercise, adding more reps and intensity as you build strength.

4.  Stop Doing So Much Cardio

"The most harmful misconception is that more is better, especially when it comes to cardio. Spending long periods of time doing cardio, particularly continuous, low-intensity cardio, can actually be counterproductive. It can cause the body to hold onto its energy sources ... for fear that it will need them for future long, continuous exertions."  

Alternatively, short bursts of high-intensity exercises (also known as high-intensity interval training or HIIT) has been shown to burn fat, and lots of it. Thirty minutes of HIIT is much more efficient and effective than an hour of steady-state cardio."  —Annie Mulgrew, director of programming, CityRow

5.  Fall in love with exercise that changes your mood and your life, not just your body.

"[The most harmful misconception about getting into shape is] that looking better on the outside is the best part — it's not! Of course getting fit and losing weight are important and huge motivators, but in my experience, mood and energy changes are the most immediate and gratifying part of getting into shape."

Being in shape helps you in every aspect of your life — it helps you sleep better, boosts your energy throughout the day, and puts you in a better mood. (Endorphins are a beautiful thing, right, Elle Woods?)"  —Natalia Roberts, instructor, 305 Fitness

Train for Your Body Type: Mesomorphs -- Part 4 of 4

Mesomorph Body Type

Mesomorph:  Muscular and well-built, with a high metabolism and responsive muscle cells

You have the body type that finds it easiest to add new muscle and you don’t tend to store much body fat. Mesomorphs tend to take their naturally athletic builds for granted, which can result in diluted workouts and poor diets. Keeping in peak physical condition is often tempered by a scattered approach to eating and training.

The key here is to make the most of your body shape. That means following a progressive plan that will make you stronger and more athletic by increasing your power without getting too bulky. To fuel your workouts, you’ll need plenty of whole grains.

Are You a Mesomorph?

If you are, you’ll know it from the jealous looks. Mesomorphs look well built without setting foot in a gym, and pack on muscle the instant they pick up a dumbbell. If this sounds like you, you’ve hit the genetic jackpot – but you can make the most of your DNA with some tactical workout tricks.

What Mesomorphs Might Be Doing Wrong

Mesomorphs often won’t train as hard as they can.  Mesomorphs should try timed workouts, to give them goals to aim for and raise their workout intensity.

What Mesomorphs Should Be Doing

Mesomorphs should train athletically.  Try sprints, box and vertical jumps or other plyometrics.  Mesomorphs respond well to low reps and power moves.  Alternatively, interval sprints will pump up their metabolism and strip away fat.

What to Eat

Although the usual caveats apply, the good news is that your body will respond well to whatever healthy food you put into it.  A basic guideline for mesomorphs to follow would be to consume meals that are 40% complex carbohydrates, 30% lean protein and 30% healthy fats. So, for example, a plate that contained vegetables such as cauliflower and broccoli, grilled chicken and olive oil on wholegrain bread would represent a staple dish for this body type.

What Else?

You should also factor in recovery days.  Some light movements on your rest days will help get the blood flowing and keep you fresh.

Money Moves

You’ll respond well to power moves.  Try pairing a strength move with a power move that works the same muscles. For example, superset five reps on the deadlift with five on the power clean.

The Mesomorph Cheat Sheet

Do

  • Train like an athlete

  • Time your workouts

  • Set personal bests

Don’t

  • Take your body for granted

  • Eat whatever you like