Our Zella PRO expert instructors are ready to get you going with inspiration, info and tips on staying fit and healthy. One of our pros, Holly Worley, an instructor at Pure Barre in Colorado, shares three expert tips for getting the most out of your workout—especially when all you want to do is throw in the towel.
What if the next time your muscles were shaking you could keep going? What if the next time you set out to run five miles you ran six? What if you could push past the burn and leave discouragement in the dust?
I’ve got three ways to challenge yourself to make the mind–body connection for a better workout.
We’ve all been there: 5 minutes into a run, halfway through a barre class or 20 minutes into cycling, and we are ready to give up. At that moment, heaven would be a couch and a doughnut. When you’ve hit this point, your body is telling your mind loud and clear that it’s time to give up—that it can’t go on! It doesn’t take long for our bodies to give in to these thoughts and abruptly stop or slow down our workout, leaving us feeling discouraged.
Say goodbye to discouragement as you take on the mind–body connection challenge. A good workout goes much further than physical exertion, and entails using your mind while connecting with your body to achieve top results.
1. Escape the outside world: As a new mom, I have learned that nothing is about me anymore! My thoughts, my time, my energy are all demanded by my sweet little girl. Any mom out there knows what it’s like when you reach that moment of “I just need a minute.” As I have journeyed down this road of parenthood, my “me time” has become my exercise time. I have made it my goal when I walk into the studio to put all thoughts aside and focus on my workout. Maybe your thoughts are not filled with Cheerios and tiny toes but with big work decisions and proposals—either way, it is so hard for us to shut down our minds from the daily tasks of life. If you can challenge yourself to leave unproductive thoughts at the door so you can really focus on your workout, you will notice better form, deeper work and freedom from your day-to-day. Make your workout time about you and your goals.
2. Focus on the muscle you are trying to change: Whether your preference is a 55-minute cardio session, yoga, barre class or a run, think about the muscles you are trying to change. My expertise is in barre, which is known for its class structure and technique. We break it down into three main muscle groups: thighs, seat and abdominals. We work each group rigorously and then stretch them out to create long, lean muscles. Strategic, thought-filled movements using the muscles will help take your workout deeper than ever before and give you quicker results.
3. Find your edge, then push past it: The best part of making the mind–body connection while working out is that you know your mind and body better than anyone else. “Find your edge” is a term I use for finding that point where your body says “no more” and from there pushing it even further. Allow your mind to tell your body it is stronger than it thinks. When you can work your body from your edge and beyond you are allowing your mind to influence the body in ways it never has before.
Next time you set foot in the gym or bike the trail or whatever workout you prefer, remember you are stronger than you think! Take the mind–body challenge and get the most out of your workout today.
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