Many people begin the New Year with plans to adhere to a regular exercise routine and strict diet program. However, it's important to have the right information to ensure you avoid boredom, overtraining and reaching a plateau.



Keep things fun


One of the main reasons people quit their exercise routine is the monotony of performing the same exercises for the same amount repetitions. It's important to keep exercise fun by participating in activities you enjoy to break up the repetitiveness of the gym.


Rollerblading, jogging or playing basketball are alternatives to the running on the treadmill. Playing with children or yard work, such as shoveling or raking, forces resistance training much like lifting weights. Try combining three workouts per week in a gym setting with other activities to avoid boredom.



Overtraining is common


Training the main muscle groups (chest, back and legs) twice per week is suitable for someone who exercises on a regular basis. Beginners or those who haven't exercised in awhile should aim to train them once a week. An example workout routine would be chest and abs on Monday, back and arms on Wednesday and legs on Friday.


In addition to a weight training routine, it's a good idea to include 20 to 30 minutes of cardiovascular training. Overtraining occurs when someone begins their workout routine by exercising too strenuously. As a result, they are overly sore over the next couple days and lack energy to continue their routine. Avoid overtraining by planning out a beginner program, which will not overly shock the muscles.



Break the plateau


Losing weight and building muscle is satisfying since it shows that the hard work is paying off. A plateau in results often occurs when the individual is stagnant with their workouts another good reason to include variety into your workout.


Intensity is the key to breaking a plateau. Increasing intensity during a workout will increase the calorie burn and rev up metabolic function. For example, increase intensity on the treadmill by incorporating sprint intervals. Weight lifters can increase intensity by reducing the amount of time between sets to increase muscle endurance.


The other culprit behind a plateau is calorie counting. Getting rid of soda, eating more vegetables and cutting back on processed sugars can only get you so far. It's important to find out your BMR (can be found online by searching "BMR Calculator") to determine how many calories you should be consuming on a daily basis. This information will allow tweaks to your diet to help break through a plateau.


Dustin Bogle is personal trainer in the High Desert. Contact him at (760) 6462371 or visit www.TheFitnessBros.com.