Bored of the gym? Sick of the same exercises, thumping tunes, and sweaty bodies around you? Tried various diets and healthy eating regimes and bored of brown rice and chicken by the second day?
We all reach a point where we have exercise fatigue and consider giving up a fitness journey. Sometimes we think we are making no progress, while other times the benefits just don’t feel worth the uphill battle to achieve them. If this sounds familiar, then it might be time to try some other, unconventional ways to shake up the standard exercise routine and think outside the box in order to achieve those fitness goals.
Scare Yourself Fit
Being scared doesn’t actually burn any more calories than being in a relaxed state. So, watching Hereditary over and over again isn’t going to replace a visit to the gym. However, the state of being scared does bring with it a nifty trick that can help us with our stagnant workout routines. When you are scared, your body enters a fight or flight state. One of the benefits of this is that you are primed to be able to run (which takes energy) or fight (which takes energy). So, being scared prepares your body to use more energy than it normally would. You’ll be able to work out that bit harder with the adrenaline produced from the fear. To do this, you could either visit a new gym you’re intimidated by or you could take part in a loud, raucous class that gives you the same fight-or-flight feelings and allows you to get back into the zone and break the plateau. Alternatively, you could even do something as simple as playing a tense game before your gym session. They don’t have to be terrifying in their themes either – it might be enough to go with something that is high-stakes and involves risk instead. You can find out the latest casino offer from Paddy Power, which includes games that set your heartbeat, racing such as live poker and live roulette, and ones that are available on smartphones, so they can be played in the changing room just before the workout.
Laugh Yourself Fit
Another unconventional way of getting back into the swing of exercising is through laughter. Recently, a rumour circulated that laughing can give you abs, and while it sounds too good to be true, it turns out it is scientifically endorsed. Indeed, 30 minutes of belly laughing can help tone your abdominal muscles and can sometimes be better than crunches. Laughing can also help crack our brains when we are feeling ennui with our exercising. In India in the 1990s, the ‘guru of giggling’, Dr Madan Kataria, developed laughter yoga. Apparently, the human brain cannot tell the difference between genuine laughter – elicited by something funny to produce positive endorphins – and fake laughter. So, by laughing, whether real or fake, good chemicals are released, which give us a more positive mindset. Laughter can also help our recovery. The expression ‘laughter is the best medicine’ isn’t just a throwaway remark; it’s entrenched in science. When doing any exercise, especially weightlifting, the body needs time to recover and repair the micro-damage to the muscles in order to make them grow. So, laughter can aid in this recovery, too. This could benefit those who still feel a Monday workout on Friday afternoon.
Changing up an exercise routine is always important, but that doesn’t just mean swapping dumbbells for kettlebells. Alternative methods such as laughter or fear can help us break those exercise and fitness plateaus.