These days, the word “hacking” isn't used in its negative sense. Today, to “hack” something means to get more productivity or benefit out of something. And exercise, our topic today, is definitely hack-able. Squeeze out more benefit from your exercise regimen with the tips in this post.
Why Hack Your Exercise Regimen?
The answer is simple -- because most of us are mouse potatoes, not bodybuilders. We don't have the time and resources that the muscleheads have, so we can't afford to put in as much focus into our exercise regimens.
So in true mouse potato fashion, we need to find ways to increase productivity in the gym, too. The following three tips will help you get more out of your exercise regimens -- in less time.
Tip #1 - Don't Divide Workouts Among Muscle Groups.
Can you really afford to work out 3, 4, or 5 times a week? If your answer is “yes,” then go forth and divide! But if you can only go to the gym once or twice, then it's best NOT to divide workout days among muscle groups, and instead go for full-body workouts on every trip to the gym.
Work out ALL your muscle groups (or at least as many as you can cram into your session), then take a day or two (or three) to recover. You'll be surprised at how quickly your muscles will recover, and before you know it you're good to go for another full-body workout.
Tip #2 - Get Used To Doing Supersets.
You can reap the benefits of an hour's workout in 30 minutes if you do supersets. For starters, try doing two or more exercises in tandem with each other. Think of it as “exercise multitasking.”
While working out one muscle group, you rest another -- and then switch between them after each set. For instance, you can do push-ups while your legs are resting from a set of squats, or you can do dumbbell curls while your abs recover from a set of crunches.
Tip #3 - Find Exercises That Work Out More Than One Muscle Group
This is why bodyweight exercises are the best in the bunch -- most of them work out more than just one muscle group. Any bodybuilder will tell you that if you had to choose between machines, free weights, and bodyweight exercises, they'd tell you to go with Mother Nature and use your own body's weight as resistance.
For instance, the humble push-up works out the shoulder, chest, and tricep muscles all in one swoop. Horizontal bar pull-ups work out the biceps, the abs, and the back muscles. Round out the superset with some good hard squats, and you have yourself a full-body workout!
Try these three tips out on your next visit to the gym, and you'll start building muscle like crazy -- at least in mouse potato standards. Have anything to add to these “exercise hacks?” Share your hacks below!
What about you? Do you have a take on the matter? Be sure to let us know what you think!