Muscles need to be confused so they don’t adapt to what you are doing. This keeps them “on their toes” to react to whatever situation you put them in. So when you do a certain activity like running, dancing, hiking, skiing, you should change up your workout routine or add other modes of activity to really keep the muscles in “tune”. This is called cross training. For instance, if you dance you can cross train with Pilates. If you run, work out with balance equipment to further get into your core.
But you also want the activity you choose to involve the intensity of the activity you are performing. When skiing or skating, working on glut. exercises and explosive moves would simulate what you are doing in skiing or skating. Jumps, planks, total body movement with weight would make these sports more effortless.
With moderate intensity activities, like hiking, think of your work to rest ratio. You may want to do a few exercises at once with 20 second rest in between then after finishing a round, do a longer rest period before repeating the exercises in the next round.
With endurance activities, like dancing or biking, you want to incorporate more cardio. Instead of doing 4 exercises in a row and taking a break, do 10 exercises in a row. Each exercise should work on different muscle groups so you aren’t using the same movement patterns, meaning again confusing your muscles, and you challenge your conditioning.
When working out you want to incorporate different muscle groups to get a more uniform workout. Exercises that involve abdominals, lower body, upper body, so you don’t overly fatigue one group. Intersperse your muscle groups so if you just finished an exercise working on the arms, go to the legs next so the arms have a recovery time.
Recovery time is just as important as working out. Muscles do need a rest. This gives them the chance to recover, build strength, remodel, and adapt to the changes you may be asking of your body.
No matter what activity you choose, choose the intensity level that simulates the activity and work on the muscles and movements that help to make the activity more effortless.
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