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Presse Santé

5 tips to take your fitness to the next level

When you are new to exercise, fitness gains come quickly. But once you put on your running shoes or start exercising regularly, you need to work harder to challenge your strong, efficient body. You can achieve this by changing the intensity, duration and frequency of your exercises. The trick is to avoid doing too much to cause injury or burns.

Create a smart and safe change with these 5 tips

1 Evaluate your current fitness level

Start by evaluating your current situation and your strengths and weaknesses.

Ask yourself:

What you are already doing (exercise mode) including cardio exercises and strength training.
Intensity of your efforts (intensity)
How often do you do this (frequency)
Duration (period) of exercise
Set new goals

2 Then look at where you want to be

What specific and realistic goals can you set to improve your fitness? Maybe you can run or swim 45 minutes instead of 30 minutes. Or you can add flexibility exercises to your regular workout. Maybe you want to train for events like 10k or Minitriathlon.

3 Do more

The best way to improve your physical condition is to increase the intensity of your exercise. Intensity refers to the effort you put into it. The fitter you are, the more you need to exercise to feel excited and get results. By pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, you will get more effective training, which is important, especially if you do not have much time to train that day. If you train at low intensity, you should do longer or more frequent sessions to get the same effects on your fitness. To make progress, increase the frequency of your activity first (number of days per week). When you get fit, increase the duration and finally the intensity of each workout.

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4 Increase the intensity of your workout

Move fast. If you have walked or jogged before, start walking or running fast. The faster you move your body, the more work you will do during that time.

Add a vertical challenge. Run or walk in the mountains or increase the incline on the treadmill. Add a step stool to aerobics.

Increase resistance. Increase pedaling resistance on the bicycle. For strength training, gradually lift more weight.

Cross training. Participate in a variety of activities, some of which are highly demanding or highly potent.

Try interval training. It involves short bursts of high-intensity activity (like a 10-second sprint) with intervals of low to moderate intensity activity such as walking.

5 But do not overdo it

If you exercise for several hours daily, you run the risk of excessive injury or fatigue and tiredness, and you will not develop many additional exercise benefits. Gradually increase the total time, distance or intensity of your workouts to avoid excessive training. Change the hard and easy exercises from day to day and plan rest and recovery periods.

Once you’ve reached a new fitness, set aside some time to congratulate yourself on how far you’ve come!

* Presse Santé strives to send health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In any case, the information given does not replace the advice of a healthcare professional.

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