If after certain routines you no longer wake up with that painful yet incredibly satisfying ache then it’s probably time to change things up a bit. I’m not talking the whole workout, but adding a few new exercises, increasing your weights or aiming for higher reps can really make a difference.
This might seem blatantly obvious, but once you’ve nailed down a routine and become comfortable with your exercises and techniques it’s easy to overlook the need for change. This also applies to people who are easily bored by the same, repetitive routines. If your mind isn’t fully dedicated then chances are you are going to see limited progress.
When it comes to the need for change in your bum or leg routine you are best increasing the weights you use, even if this means doing lower reps. Many female, professional power lifters and body builders promote the higher weights vs lower reps theory in order to build up your glutes. Depending on what weight you are currently using try and go 10kg more and then drop your reps to around 6/8 for 3 sets. It’s insanely hard at first but after a few sessions you’ll be surprised at how light this new weight becomes. It’s also a good idea to add some new exercises into your bum routine so you’re constantly activating different muscles.
These are the changes I like to make every now and again to mine:
Warm up on treadmill → Warm up on Cross trainer
Weighted Donkey Kicks → Cable Kick Backs
Weighted Lunges → Sets of Kettle Bells
Seeing as I don’t have as much strength in my abs compared to my glutes/legs I don’t often find that my current routine isn’t pushing me enough. However, if I’m feeling particularly motivated I like to try and increase each exercise by 10 reps. This will push you past the slightly achy feeling and bring you straight in to full on burning. Unlike training your glutes the most efficient way to improve your ab routine is more reps, but adding a few new exercises in or combining your routine with a different style of cardio will also make a huge difference.
If your gym offers the popular Les Milles classes then the GRIT Cardio is great for new and inventive exercises. If you prefer something milder then try Pilates. Although this has the stereotype for being aimed at the older generation, Pilates is key to deep stretching and stimulating every muscle. Most teachers include 10 minutes of core work in their classes, which is ideal for giving ideas on how to change up your own routines with the exercises that you found worthwhile.
Switching up your routine to a higher intensity is not only beneficial for physical progress but also for your mental health. Even if you’re tired and severely lacking in motivation once you push through it mood enhancers such as serotonin and dopamine are released into your brain, making you feel so much more positive.