Many of us start the New Year off by revisiting a “good routine”, wanting to lose weight or getting ready for spring season of sports, and so soon fall off that path. Setting realistic objectives and understanding how to get to your goal can help you stay on task. Are you training for a marathon, starting your pre-season training for baseball, or attempting to lose that holiday weight? This will help you get started.
Are you training for an aerobic or anaerobic goal, endurance or sprinting training? If you are a sprinter, training for your track season, running long distances to train may be less effective than working on your speed and short distance training. The same can be said for marathon training, sprinting routines are not recommended to ready your muscles to perform at that level. Training for the nature of the sport produces better results. Now with that said there are always exceptions to that rule. Pitchers are trained in distance or endurance, due to the length of the game and the repetitive nature of their position.
Muscle confusion, such as P90x, Insanity, Crossfit, and other cross training routines have shown good results in combination with a well balanced diet to be effective in losing weight. Performing the same exercise routine every day is less effective than having variety in your workouts, which includes exercises, repetitions, and weights used. In addition, changing the specific exercise routine every 4 weeks is recommended.
Muscles, aerobic capacity, and our body’s intake needs can adapt to routines that stay the same. When this happens the effect of your diet and exercise is lessened. Changing our routines by mixing both intake and workouts will confuse your body so that it does not have a chance to acclimate. This is true with weight loss as well as pre-season training. Proper nutrition and rest are also components in a healthy routine to ensure your energy needs are met during all phases of training.
Prevention has been talked about frequently in these articles. Learning the proper and most effective way to train, begin new routines, or return to a healthy lifestyle is important prior to the start of your adventure. This includes talking with your physician if you have health concerns. Your physical therapist is a great resource to discuss proper technique, variation, and injury prevention.