Is there anything exercise can’t do? It helps people lose weight and sleep better, as well as aids in the prevention of colds and disease. And aside from the endorphins it creates to uplift moods and energy levels, hitting the gym can also reduce stress. With all these benefits, it would seem that more is better - but is that really the case?
To stay healthy, experts recommend about 30 minutes per day of moderately intense exercise five days a week. If you’re trying to lose or maintain your weight, 60 to 90 minutes a day, five times a week is the goal, and we’re talking heart-pumping, calorie-burning cardio.
With that said, it’s not always possible to fit in five workouts each week, so doubling up in one day is a great way to balance a tight schedule. When doing two daily workouts, make sure they’re different from one another so you can include a balance of cardio, strength training, and stretching over the course of a day. Go for a run in the morning and take an evening yoga class, or hit up that lunchtime Spin class and do some strength training before dinner. Be conscious of which muscles you’re targeting each time you exercise, because solely working your legs twice in one day could not only cause a muscular imbalance that leads to pain or injury, but you’ll also get bored. Rest days are also important, so take it easy at least twice a week to allow your muscles a chance to heal and strengthen.
Of course if you’re training for a race, tackling a daylong hike or snowshoe, or attending a fitness event, you’ll be exceeding the two to three hours of exercise two basic workouts would entail. For big fitness bursts like this, pace yourself throughout the day and be mindful of pushing yourself too far. If you’re feeling extremely lethargic, dizzy, nauseous, or painfully sore, stop immediately to rest, and the next time scale down the intensity a bit. If two regular daily workouts is something you’d like to make a habit of, it’s a good idea to stick to 30 to 90 minutes per session, and make one high-intensity cardio and the other lower intensity.
Also keep in mind that exercising twice in one day will cause you to burn more calories, and make sure you’re nourishing yourself with enough protein and healthy carbs. And as long as getting in your two workouts doesn’t have a negative effect on your life or prevent you from getting enough sleep, then there’s nothing wrong with sweating it out twice (as long as you’re OK with taking two showers!).
Cardio is a must for burning calories and losing overall body fat, but you need to complement it with strength training to build muscle. More muscle mass not only burns extra calories, it also transforms the way your body looks, so your weight loss is even more noticeable. Sculpted, toned arms, shoulders, and an upper back are only a click away – just follow one of these effective upper-body workouts regularly, and you’re sure to notice a difference in your strength and appearance.
Source: POPSUGAR Studios
We love holiday weekends as much as the next girl, but a party-filled Fourth doesn’t have to mean giving up on your workout goals for the weekend. In fact, a longer weekend is the perfect time to do yourself proud and schedule in an intense, longer workout. Start your holiday off right by taking just an hour or so to do one of these workouts before you hit the barbecue.
- Gym circuit workout: This intense hour-long circuit workout will keep things interesting at the gym. Go from pushups to jumps to barbell presses, and in the blink of an eye, 60 minutes will pass by. The result? Hundreds of calories burned, and an afterburn effect that’ll stay with you well into your holiday festivities.
- Feel the burn: Ready for a treadmill challenge? This 60-minute treadmill and strength-training session – a modified version of the celeb-favorite Burn 60 workout – will have you hopping on and off the treadmill, which will really challenge your body. Never a dull moment, always a fierce calorie burn.
- Five-mile playlist: Ready to take your normal three-mile run up a notch? This weekend is the perfect time to get out a little longer. This 50-minute running playlist is perfect for those who are at a 10-minute mile.
- Outdoor running challenge: If you’re looking for a mix of both running and strength-training, all made for the outdoors, then this 60-minute running workout is for you. It involves running at your own fast pace for a few minutes, followed by a minute of fun muscle-building moves.
- Not bored on the elliptical: Give your elliptical routine a boost with this 60-minute elliptical interval workout, which will burn major calories before you go out.
It’s time to embrace the sun and get outside while you strength train. You can print every single one of these no-equipment workouts (or just pull them up on your phone) to take with you the next time you want to get out of the stuffy gym and strengthen those muscles. These workouts are especially fun to do after a good long run so you can skip the warmup, but they also work well alone. No matter how you decide to do these, it’s time to get outside and get inspired!
Source: Megan Wolfe Photography
Don’t waste time! Make your strength-training workouts more effective by keeping your body guessing by trying new things. Changing up your routine by working your muscles in different ways will make the body stronger and more sculpted and will also help prevent a fitness or weight-loss plateau.
If you’ve been doing the same strength-training workout forever, here are some new ideas. Choose an entirely different routine to do each time you work out.
- Prop-Free, 10-Minute HIIT Workout
- 30-Minute, Body-Weight Workout – No Equipment Needed
- Build Muscle and Burn Fat Plyometric Workout
- Full-Body Circuit Workout With Weights
Abs and Core
- Quick, 3-Minute Ab Routine
- Fit in 5: Ab Workout
- 10 Minutes to Tone: All Abs Workout
- 20-Minute Power-Plank Flat-Abs Challenge
- Quick, Intense, Effective: Your 5-Minute Arm Workout
- Target the Triceps in This 10-Minute Workout
- 10-Minute Tone-Up: Arms and Shoulders
- Tone Your Arms and Back in 15 Minutes!
- Fitness Quickie: Inner-Thigh Workout
- 5-Minute Upper-Thigh Workout
- 10-Minute Skinny-Jeans Workout
- 10-Minute Tush-Toning Pilates Workout