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How are your 2014 workouts going? Are you killing it in the gym? Maybe you want to take your current workout up a notch but you’re not sure how?  Well, you’re in the right place! Below are a few ideas to makeover your current workout, or inspire you to try a completely different one. Either way, give these ideas a chance and you’ll definitely see a difference in your current sweat sessions! If you’re really ready to slim down or tone up, why wait?! Give your workouts the makeover they need now!

1. Do you mindlessly read a book on the elliptical for your 30 minutes of cardio?  Are you bored on the elliptical?  So bored you think you need to read a book or magazine?  Well guess what?  Your “cardio” is so boring because you’re going slow enough to read “War and Peace”.  If you were working harder, you would not be bored. Trust me. So lets do some intervals, okay?  Change up peddling forwards and backwards, change the incline and resistance, change the speed and work your heart rate in intervals.  Here’s an example for you:

  • 20 seconds medium resistance, high incline, peddling forwards, going as hard as you can
  • 10 seconds medium resistance, high incline, peddling forwards, slow it down to recover
  • Repeat 8 times.
  • 20 seconds medium resistance, high incline, peddling backwards, going as hard as you can
  • 10 seconds medium resistance, high incline, peddling backwards, slow it down to recover
  • Repeat 8 times.
  • 1 minute peddling forwards at about 75% effort
  • 1 minute peddling backwards at about 75% effort
  • 20 seconds medium resistance, medium incline, peddling forwards, going as hard as you can
  • 10 seconds medium resistance, medium incline, peddling forwards, slow it down to recover
  • Repeat 8 times.
  • 20 seconds medium resistance, medium incline, peddling backwards, going as hard as you can
  • 10 seconds medium resistance, medium incline, peddling backwards, slow it down to recover
  • Repeat 8 times.
  • 1 minute peddling forwards at about 75% effort
  • 1 minute peddling backwards at about 75% effort
  • 20 seconds medium resistance, low incline, peddling forwards, going as hard as you can
  • 10 seconds medium resistance, low incline, peddling forwards, slow it down to recover
  • Repeat 8 times.
  • 20 seconds medium resistance, low incline, peddling backwards, going as hard as you can
  • 10 seconds medium resistance, low incline, peddling backwards, slow it down to recover
  • Repeat 8 times.
  • 1 minute peddling forwards at about 75% effort
  • 1 minute peddling backwards at about 75% effort
  • Done!

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2. Do you have a standard set of exercises you crank out on nautilus machines?  Trade your machines in for some free weights.  Every nautilus exercise has a weight room equivalent, so get after it! Sit on a stability ball or stand on a Bosu ball. Additions like these transition your workouts to working individual muscle groups to working multiple muscle groups by adding total body resistance and balance work. Easy as that!

3. Do you jog at a steady pace on the treadmill for 30 minutes?  You know what’s going to be suggested, right?  Intervals!  How about sprinting your booty off (literally) with 1 minute sprints followed by 2 minutes of recovery walking.  Once you’ve conquered that, increase your sprints to 1.5 minutes with a 1.5 recovery.  Or maybe try a 1 minute jog, 1 minute sprint, 1 minute recovery combo?  The key is to sprint and recover.

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4. Have you been lifting the same amount of weights forever?  Well, increase them! How about for the next month you really increase the amount of weight you lift. Do we dare try to double it?  Okay, well maybe not double it in every instance, but you better add at least 5 pounds.  If you’re increasing your bicep curls from 8 pounds to 15 pounds, you’re not going to be able to bang out your usual 12 reps, but do what you can.  Listen to your body and challenge your body daily. Remember, nothing worth having comes easy, and this mantra definitely rings true in your exercise!

5. Do you have a regular walking date with your treadmill?  Listen, I know that for whatever reason there are a lot of people out there who are very restricted with what kinds of physical activities they can do, and that’s fine.  You can still lose weight and challenge yourself.  Try cranking up the incline, walking backwards, and even side strides.  By changing up the way you’re walking, you’ll work different parts of your legs and get a better workout.

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6. Are you afraid to try something new?  Do you avoid group classes at all costs? Does your gym offer tons of classes, but you only do spinning. Kinda lame when you think about it, right? If possible, challenge yourself and try at least one new class once a month. Between classes like Zumba, TRX, Pilates, Hot Yoga, etc., you’re bound to find new (and challenging!) ways to makeover your workouts!

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7. Are you a gym pro who is pretty sure they are already getting everything possible out of your workout?  Well, we call BS!  There is always room to improve, so let’s improve, shall we?  Try incorporating a Bosu balance trainer into your workout.  Stand on it while you do your squats, curls, presses, rows, and overhead extensions.  Flip it over for planks, push-ups, and more squats.  Try one foot on the dome when you do your lunges.  Really stick it to your abs by using the Bosu for crunches and v-sits.  When you incorporate a Bosu into your workout, you’re going to challenge yourself, especially your core, by having to keep your balance while you do your strength training, and we all want a tight core, right?

All right, so which workout makeover are you going to try?  There’s no reason why you can’t even try them all!