It’s so easy to do and with technology so readily available to us, it has become the norm to put in the ear buds or flip on the TV while we run on the treadmill or do some curls.
What if we take away all those distractions and actually focus in on what we are doing with our bodies?
Taking away the music or shows you watch will challenge the body as well as the mind as help connect more with your body. There are many times when I am teaching a cycling class that I really have the participants focus in on their bodies and what they are doing with them. We do leg isolation drills that help bring focus to our pedal strokes and how the different muscles in the legwork together for those pedal strokes. These drills also tend to show the difference in the strength of each leg. We also focus in on our breath and how different activities affect or breathing and heart rate. When participants become aware of their bodies, they tend to work more efficiently which is something we should all be working towards.
So I am going to challenge you to give your workouts more focus this week and see if you notice a difference.
Here are a few things to try when you turn off the music or put down the book for your cardio workout. Focus on what you’re doing — how your body is moving, how hard is your heart beating and how do you feel? Are you using good posture or are your shoulders rounded forward? Is your stride smooth or jerky? Is your body tense or are you relaxing?
Pay attention to these things and make corrections if you find your form is sloppy.
In terms of your focus in your strength training, I challenge you to plant yourself in front of a mirror during at least three of your exercises. Watch yourself go through each motion with slow, controlled reps and pay attention to your form while thinking about the muscles you’re working. Do each and every rep with perfect form and admire the body you have and the one you are working towards!
I know many of you think your workout is over, but you still have one more place to focus on and that is your stretching.
When you’re doing your stretches — and I know you will never skip them right? — I challenge you to give yourself plenty of time to stretch all your muscles. Spend at least 15 seconds on each stretch and concentrate on gently lengthening your muscles. This is your chance to enjoy the effects of your workout.
I hope you give this a try and notice the positive effect it can have on your workout.