Maybe you love running—or perhaps yoga is more your style—but sticking to one exercise regimen month-after-month, year-after-year, could actually be detrimental in the long term. There are many advantages to adding variety to your work out:
- Keep it interesting People who vary their routine are more likely to maintain exercise as a part of their lifestyle and avoid boredom and burnout.
- Burn more calories. When you do the same exercise for a long period, your body becomes more efficient at it. Efficiency means it takes less energy to do the same amount of exercise. Different activities work different muscles and keep you working hard.
- Expand your range of motion. Various exercises work your muscles in different ways and build new physical skills.
- Overcome plateaus. Changes in your routine force your body to adapt to new ways of moving. As it works harder to perform these new activities, you’ll see different results.
- Meet new people. Birds of a feather flock together. Expand your social circle by trying new exercise classes, sports, or other activities.
- Avoid injury. Repetition can lead to overuse injury and cause you to miss exercise while you recover. Often it can be harder to work exercise back into your schedule once you’ve been out of habit for an extended period. With variety, you can avoid lapses in your exercise regimen and decrease the likelihood of causing temporary or permanent damage.
Circuit training, cycling, walking, running, yoga, swimming, Zumba, weight lifting, aerobics, elliptical, hiking, boating, tennis, golf—the options are endless! What’s your excuse? Give something new a try.