Ashley Verma, Founder of Define London, says men need to embrace different exercise methods this year, including ‘the trend taking over the nation: barre.’ Barre workouts involve a series of postures, aided by a stationary hand-rail, as used in ballet.
Verma has outlined 10 top tips that men should follow if they want to get in shape in 2018:
1) Be patient and set realistic goals
A lot of men who have a competitive nature tend to be in a rush to achieve results: to be the strongest, the fastest, the best. Take a step back and really think about what you want to achieve and at what point in your journey. This will give you the best results in the long-term.
2) Run in ad breaks
Keep active wherever possible, even if that’s jogging on the spot or squatting in the five minute ad breaks in between your favourite TV shows. Why not try and fit in 50 press ups in between penalty kicks? Or do weights while your football team sing the national anthem? Quick hits make a difference, while getting your head into the right mindset at the same time.
3) Be more flexible
Ensure you spend double the time stretching your tight muscles as your flexible muscles. Frequent male problem areas are the hamstrings, shoulders, and lower back so pay extra attention here to avoid preventable injuries.
4) Vary your fitness routine
Alternate your exercise activities to stay motivated to work out — variety is good for both the mind and the body, and you may learn new things about your body with the different workouts you do. Don’t be afraid to try the more stereotypically feminine forms of exercise such as yoga, ballet barre and pilates, as many top athletes swear by these methods, and you may be surprised by the results…
5) Find a fitness buddy
If you need more motivation to stick with your fitness and diet plan, don’t feel like you’re alone. Workout with a friend to heighten your focus on fitness, but also to add an edge of competition. Go further by choosing a buddy who’s a bit more advanced, stronger or faster, as they’ll make you feel challenged. Working harder to keep up will help you reach your fitness goals.
6) Develop strength-training exercises
For strength training, all you need is your own body weight. Strength training means using resistance to create work for your muscles. Instead of just focusing on strengthening the upper body one day and then the lower the next, pair it all together. This way you get a full-body workout that will maximize your daily calorie burn.
7) Get stronger fast
Do the same amount of exercise in 10 percent less time. This will force your muscles to work harder, whilst improving your endurance at the same time. A bonus is you will have more time to catch up on the sports highlights.
8) Create music playlists that will inspire and take you further
We can all relate to certain tracks making you feel happier and more upbeat, so make sure your playlist reflects the mood you want to be in while you work out. Quick motivational music will give you better results in the long-term.
9) Listen to your body
Your body is your greatest ally when it comes to working out, so it’s important to never ignore what it is telling you. If it’s telling you to slow down, abide. If your body is telling you that you have more to give, turn it up. You may embark on a certain training method to find that is not the body type you are striving for. A week in you may hit setbacks, will you be prepared to mentally handle them? Have a game plan and adapt as you go along.
10) Journal your workouts
Write down progress, thoughts and how you found certain workouts. It can be an invaluable tool for checking progress and analysing what works for you, what doesn’t, and why. Journal your gym sessions and look back weeks ahead for motivation and ideas of what to try next.