Let’s face it, every now and again, exercise gets boring. I know, I know, no one wants to admit it, but its true. A person can only run around the high school track so many times before screaming in frustration. Spring is the perfect time to shake things up a bit- after all it’s a time of new growth, changes, and the return of the sun. Here are a few ways to shake up your exercise routine and get rid of those doldrums that have been bringing you down.
Tip # 1: Change the Venue
At least for me, one of the biggest reason I become bored with an exercising inside is because the scenery doesn’t really change that much. Sure, there is the occasional television or motivational poster, but let’s face it; exercising inside a gym isn’t exactly simulating to the senses. Exercising day after day in such a static environment can get rather tiresome.
So, when the weather is cooperative, take your exercise outside. There are plenty of parks, nature trails, and safe neighborhoods that you can walk or jog through, and if you’re worried about missing out on weight training, strap on a few wrist or ankle weights. Trust me, your body will get plenty of exercise doing just that.
Tip # 2: And Now for Something Totally Different….
Believe it or not, your body is very adaptable. Look at all you do in your daily life, all the ways that your body has to adjust and change. Why not challenge your body and yourself by trying something completely different? If you enjoy swimming, why not try some kickboxing down at the local YMCA? If you’re a solitary runner like me, see if there is something like a Zumba class nearby that you can take for a few months. The trick is to “mix up” your regular workout routine so that your body will have to adjust and overcome.
Tip # 3: Check out Your Local Library
No, I’m not joking here. Chances are you’re local library has a lot of workout videos. From Yoga videos to Sweatin to the Oldies, there is bound to be something you haven’t tried before. Why not get a library card ( you really should if you don’t have one), pick up a few exercise DVDs for a few weeks and give them a whirl? Not only will you learn new things, but you’ll also have the knowledge that you’re helping to support your library. That’s a win-win in my book.
Tip # 4: Switch Up Your Intervals
If you train with weights, one great way to mix things up is to re-invent the wheel when it comes to interval training. Most people when they lift weights do a set of twelve repetitions per set. However, there is absolutely nothing in the rules that say that 12 is a magic number. Why not do more or less? Right now someone I know is using lower weights, but increasing the number of repetitions by five every set until he reaches the five minute mark. Next month, he’ll try something else. Sure, he’s definitely feeling it afterwards, but he’s also noticing the marked improvement in his body. Check with your doctor, but chances are, there will be no problem with mixing it up a bit.
Remember to keep your doctor or medical professional in the loop about what you’re doing for exercise. He or she can definitely give you pointers for a better workout, or point you to the resources that can help. And as always, listen to your body.
So what tips can you offer to “Spring Clean” your workout? I would love to hear some of them!
Laura Seeber is a geologist, environmental professional, writer, and outdoor and nature enthusiast. Born just outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Laura has spent the majority of her life hiking through the forest, descending into caves, climbing over boulders and up cliffs, navigating river rapids, and writing and blogging about her adventures. She currently resides in Illinois and travels country in search of the next great outdoor activity or adventure.