By: Shannon Flanagan
Shannon Flanagan is a certified personal trainer. Follow her on Instagram (@shanagan9) for a sneak peek at her workouts and inspirational quotes. Ahead, she shares the workouts everyone should be doing more of.
We all know that staying in shape and being active is good for you, but it’s not a one-size-fits-all approach. You have to figure out what you like, what feels good for your body, and what gives you the results you want out of your fitness routine.
If you enjoy what you’re doing, and it doesn’tcause you discomfort, keep doing it! After a while, certain programs lose their effectiveness. I am here to tell you what workouts you may want to incorporate into your routine to help balance you and prevent burnout.
If the majority of your workouts consist of low-intensity exercises, you would benefit from adding lung conditioning and weight-bearing exercise to your routine. I would suggest choosing exercises that challenge your heart rate and take you out of your comfort zone. Adding in exercises such as kettlebells (power and strength), running, cycling, and HIIT at a moderate intensity, two days a week will help get you on the right path.
As a former long-distance runner and full-time cycling instructor, I knew what my body needed to recharge, feel good, and balance out. Running is especially hard on the body. In order for your body to run better and for longer, you must incorporate mobility and flexibility. It doesn’t necessarily mean yoga, but before a run, I suggest doing hip and shoulder mobility exercises. Before I run or cycle, I make sure to do some glute activation exercises – like band walks and hip thrusts – to prevent any kind of knee, hip, and ankle discomfort. On top of daily mobility, I would incorporate at least two days of weight training. Weight training will help build muscle and make you an overall stronger athlete.
High intensity is great but doing it too often may lead to injury. You need to be able to listen to your body. If you are constantly feeling sore and tired, that’s your body’s way of telling you “you need to do a little less.” I find that yoga or moving meditation helps my body recover and center out better. Another sign that you are pushing yourself too hard in your workouts is if you aren’t sleeping well and not seeing changes in your body. More is not better. Make sure to pop into a yoga or Pilates class to balance out your body 1-2 times a week.
I love and respect people who lift. Lifting makes you feel like a superhero, but at the same time, it keeps you humble and always looking to break that next personal record. If you want to perform better and lift heavier, you must build a solid foundation. In order to build a solid foundation, you must work on keeping your joints mobile. Mobility and explosive movements are what you are going to want to do to keep your PRs rising. Make sure you add plyometrics and power movements, such as kettlebell training, to your routine to help you stay quick, agile, and strong.