Saturday, February 12, 2011

Ask me anything - how do you build endurance?

I was asked recently - "how do you build endurance?"

Well, I am glad you asked.  Here's my thoughts on the subject!!

When you first start working out, you may not be able to keep up or go as long as you think you should.  This is completely normal!  You have to start out slow and work up to the harder moves, longer runs, and gaining strength.

Go as hard as you can each and every time you work out!  Constantly push yourself.  Now, don't go so hard that you are feeling faint, sick or can't go on, but you know your limits and most people don't even come close to pushing it as hard as they can.  Make your brain match your body!

Cross train!  Don't do the same thing everyday.  Your body gets used to what you are doing.  You have to keep mixing it up.  If you are doing a workout DVD, switch it up for a few days, try a different workout for a week.  If you are on the treadmill, change the intensity, add in some "hills", walk/run longer.  If you have reached a plauteau, then change it up.

Get your heart rate up!   This goes along with going as hard as you can, but if you are only lifting weights, your heart rate won't be as high as if you are doing cardio.  Mix it up!  If you are walking, do bursts of light jogging or brisk walking.  Don't get complacent.  Change it up, push yourself.

Get your diet in order!  You can't build up endurance drinking sodas and eating burgers and fries everyday.  That will weigh your body down.  Eat clean, whole foods, water, that is what is good for your body. Give your body the fuel it needs to do the job.

STRETCH!  Your body needs to stretch, seriously.  Your muscles will cooperate when they are happy!  Stretching makes muscles happy.  Yoga and stretching are so important.  A quick, daily stretch will go a long way in increasing your endurance.  Once a week, do a longer stretch or yoga routine, you will thank me for this one!  This will cut down on muscle cramping, soreness and you will become more flexible.

Get a fitness buddy!  You are more apt to push harder when you are working out with a friend.  Most people go harder and longer when someone is with them.  Work out together, encourage each other and push each other!  Don't have a buddy?  Take advantage of my online fitness coaching (it's free!!).  Sign up here!

Dedication and commitment are KEY!  Don't give up, keep working out daily or atleast follow your workout regiment.  If you are sporadic with your workouts, your endurance will be slow in building.  Keep going!

Discussion:  What motivates you to keep going?   To build your endurance?