A Workout For Every Mood

You select your day's outfit based on your mood. For greater fitness success, tailor your exercise routine to your disposition. If you want to exercise consistently, you need to learn to work with your mood. That means not forcing yourself to do the same old routine if you’re not feeling up to it. You’ll just get frustrated with yourself and want to quit. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should opt for an hour on the couch either. So depending on how you feel on any given day, try one of these workouts on for size.

Try: A group class or a semiprivate session with a trainer
Why it will work: Exercising with others will help you feel connected. If you’re looking for interaction, joining a group class is a no-brainer. But teaming up with a friend or family member for a personal training session works, too. The more intimate environment will allow you to talk and motivate each other. And splitting the cost for one-to-one help is a plus.

Try: Kickboxing or water aerobics
Why it will work: You’ll get to work out your aggression—or be forced to relax. When angry, some people need to let it out. Maybe you scream or rough up a pillow. Next time, try taking your aggression out on a punching bag. Kickboxing offers a total body workout and allows you to leave your grievances at the gym. Another option, at the other end of the aggression spectrum, is water aerobics. Water is soothing and refreshing, and it provides a fair amount of resistance, forcing you to slow down and relax.

Try: Circuit training
Why it will work: You’ll be done in 30 minutes. With little or no equipment, you can get a head-to-toe workout in your living room. Just set up five to seven exercises that work different parts of the body, such as lunges, push-ups, crunches, arm curls (using weights or water bottles) and leg lifts. Rotate through until you’ve done three full sets of each. Between each rotation, do one to two minutes of cardio—jumping jacks, running in place or up-downs.

Try: Tweaking it
Why it will work: Making a small change can go a long way psychologically. You’re content, you’re motivated and you’re ready to get moving. But the thought of doing your same-old same-old is making you drag your feet. No need to compose an entirely different exercise program. Just tweak yours. If you usually walk around the neighborhood, try taking your route backward or mix things up by sprinting for 30 seconds every few minutes. At the gym, do your usual resistance training, but with free weights instead of weight machines. Skip high-impact aerobics and catch a boot camp class instead. Or instead of spin class, ride a bike outside and enjoy the fresh air.

Try: Pilates, yoga or tai chi
Why it will work: Any mind-body activity that requires you to focus on your breathing can be an effective distraction from your worries. No matter what activity you choose, focus your attention inward, Matthews suggests. Be cognizant of the muscles you’re using and the way your body adapts to different movements. Feel every breath, and listen to your heartbeat. Above all, remember that your workout is for you—no one else. Remember that and you’ll have a clear mind in no time.

Try: A spin or dance class
Why it will work: Matching your workout to your energy level will get you superior results. Anytime you’re feeling particularly motivated, take full advantage of it. On those days, sign up for that high-intensity spin class or take Zumba, a Latininspired dance class. Or take any activity you enjoy to that next level. Really giving it your all when you’re feeling good will help make up for those lazier days.

Try: Going for a walk
Why it will work: Maybe you can’t bear to drag yourself out of bed to brush your teeth, get dressed, drive to the gym and work out, but persuading yourself to slip on some shoes and walk around the block is reasonable. Once you get out there, you may become more motivated. Try varying the speed. Walk at a moderate pace for five minutes and then alternate with one minute of power walking. Before you know it, you’ll be strolling around the block a second time.

Get Help Getting in Shape
Are you ready for Summer vacation? Get your body beach-ready with personal training sessions at GMC. Sign up by calling 678-312-2803. To learn more about fitness and conditioning programs at GMC, visit gwinnettmedicalcenter.org.


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