Hi guys,  Kris from Custom Fitness here, your personal trainer in Amarillo.  Are you one of the many who constantly does the same workout because “it works”?  Today I have some evidence to the contrary as well as some great ideas for how to spice up your same ol’, same ol’ routine. If you have questions about today’s blog or you would like more ideas how to get the most of your body in each and every exercise, give us a call: 806-322-3188.

Let’s take a look at movement variety.  Changing up the way you move everyday is essential for preventing injury.  It can also expedite the process of getting you to your goals as the body has to adapt to various stimuli.  

You may notice at those big box gyms, they have clients come in who do the same workout day in and day out. They may be using the same weights, the same machines, the same order even.  “Wow! They have got this workout thing down,” you may be thinking.  Actually, by performing the same movements with the same resistance in the same way everyday, they are doing their body a disservice.  The body needs to constantly be challenged in new ways if we want it to evolve.

If we merely replicating the workout from the day, weeks, or months, before, our bodies become bored and stop responding to the workout. The muscle response will go into auto-pilot mode and you won’t create new muscle fibers. This can create a muscular imbalance.

Case and point, runners.  People who only run as their workout are constantly moving in the forward direction. They rarely perform movements that strengthen the outer or rear side of their hips.  If they need to operate in another plane of motion, they are susceptible to injury because their muscles and ligaments are not as prepared (strengthened) for that movement as they are when they are running forward.

It is crucial that no matter what your go-to workout is that you are training all of your muscle groups in every direction and creating variety in your movements; side to side, backwards, forwards, and rotate..  You may have heard this referred to as cross training.

Next time you go in for your workout, try and incorporate as much variety as possible to get your whole body ready for whatever you should throw at it by moving in different ways.  You don’t have to change up your routine everyday, but at minimum try and shock your body with a new program every 4 weeks.  That is the approximate amount of time your body can endure a routine before the boredom sets in and it stops responding.

So you actually want to see results and you’ve been doing nothing but the same routine for years. How do you jazz it up?  I’ve got 4 exercises that can help keep things interesting and give you some cross training.

First up, the side lunge. You can do this with or without weights. Whatever you feel comfortable doing.  Begin standing with your feet together.  Step out to the side with your right foot, bend your knee to where your knee, shin, and ankle are in a straight line, and sit your hips back. Then, step your foot back to where it started.  Repeat on the other side.  

You can also do this as a two-way lunge, with or without weights – your choice, where you step out to the side as before, but before you bring your foot back to the starting position, step it out to a 45 degree angle. Remember to keep your knee and ankle in alignment. Then step back to your starting position and repeat on the other side.

Exercise number two is a destabilized push-up.  For this we will be using “the discs”. These are some of my favorite pieces of equipment to use since becoming a personal trainer in Amarillo. If you are working out on carpet, you can substitute paper plates. Likewise, you can use dish towels on hard surfaces like wood floors or tile.  No need to buy any fancy equipment to throw your balance off.  Begin in your plank (or push-up) position. Hands should be directly underneath your shoulders, wrists underneath elbows. Then you will move your arms to create a X position where they slide out from each other at a diagonal. Such as right arm front in the 2 o’clock position, left arm back at a the 8 o’clock position. Bring your body down, then push up. Slide the arms back to your starting position. Repeat with the back arm sliding forwarding and the front arm to the back.

Third, side to side bear crawl. A lot of people will bear crawl forward. Easy enough, but why not challenge your body and your mind to crawl to the side.  Begin in your plank position.  Take the same side arm and leg and move them out to the side, and out to the side again. Repeat on the other side.

I saved the best one for last: rising lava (ohhhh!).  This one targets your core, your triceps, and your shoulders. Begin in a seated position with you knees up towards the ceiling. Your hands should be back and slightly behind your shoulders; palms flat on the floor. Straighten your legs out on the floor. Hoist your body weight onto your arms, slide your hips off the ground, up and through into a L-sit or bridge position. Bring your hips back past your hands all while trying to keep the hips from touching the floor. Keep your body weight pressed through your arms. Keep your core activated to help maintain your momentum and get killer abs.  See, I told you this one was the best!

If you’d like more exercise tips, more ideas how to add variety into your workout, or would like more accountability for your workout, that’s what our team is here for. Give us a call at 806-322-3188 or e-mail us at info@customfitness.biz. We would be happy to have you come for a consultation.  That is comprised of us getting a feel for one another to see if we are the right fit for your goals. If you have any ideas for future blog/vlogs you would like to see discussed, please reach out to our team.  At Custom Fitness, we are YOUR personal trainers in Amarillo, Texas. Have a great day!