The 11 Best Fitness Tips Of All Time
The 11 Best Fitness Tips Of All Time

The 11 Best Fitness Tips Of All Time

Wherever you’re at in your fitness journey, even the smallest of tweaks can lead to a better workout and improved results. From must-have kit to the importance of taking a rest day, we asked six leading trainers to share the tried-and-tested advice they give to their clients time and again.
By Tor West

Lift Weights

“Strength training is a must for women – the benefits range from encouraging fat loss to enhancing mental wellbeing and building strong bones. Once we reach the age of 30, we lose around three to eight percent of our muscle mass every year – lifting weights or working against resistance is the only way to combat this. It’s never too late to get strong – start with simple bodyweight exercises like press-ups and squats, and progress from there. I’ve never heard any of my clients moaning about being too strong, although I have seen an 83-year-old client recover from a nasty fall and an ankle sprain far quicker than an unfit woman in her 40s.” – Haylene Ryan-Causer, co-founder of Volonte


Don’t Cut Carbs

“Ever since low-carb diets came on the scene, carbs have been demonised, but we all need them in our diet, every day, especially if you train. Whether you’re working out to gain muscle, lose fat or for better performance, carbs will give you the energy you need to achieve your goals. For a better, more effective workout, eat carbs an hour before your session as well as a decent amount after you finish to fuel and recovery your body for optimal performance.” – Liberty Cox, strength & conditioning coach at BXR


Focus On Full-Body Workouts

“Getting to the gym more than three times a week isn’t always feasible. A full-body routine – as opposed to a workout that only focuses on a specific body part – will ensure you’re training all muscle groups in one workout. Moreover, full-body sessions tend to incorporate compound moves that use multiple muscle groups, which are an efficient way to train for both strength and cardio benefits. Compound exercises raise your heart rate more than isolated exercises as the body needs to oxygenate more muscles at one time. In a nutshell, a full-body session will give you more bang for your buck, especially if you’re looking to maximise calorie burn and sculpt a leaner body.” – Lorna Florence, coach at Dabbs Fitness


Squat Daily

“Deep squats are an effective and functional exercise that humans have been doing forever. They’re also one of the most effective ways to strengthen your lower body and glutes. As babies, we are wonderfully pliable and flexible, but the minute we become desk-bound or spend our life sitting, muscles grow tight. When we sit at a desk, the core isn’t activated, and our hip flexors and hamstrings are in a shortened state, causing them to weaken over time. Get into the habit of doing deep squats daily – you’ll soon feel stronger, have better posture and get relief from back pain.” – Haylene


Stretch Your Feet

“There are over 100 muscles and tendons in your feet – they’re the foundation of your body. However, unless you’re in pain or discomfort, we don’t tend to think about foot health that much. Knee, hip, neck and back pain can all be improved by giving your feet some TLC. Everything is connected by a continual line of connective tissue from the soles of your feet through your lower back and up to your neck. Rolling a golf ball under your feet can relieve discomfort in the arch – it’s a great stretch for runners – while walking on sand is a fantastic way to stretch and strengthen the feet and calves.” – Haylene


Get An Extra Hour Of Sleep

“If you’re putting in the hard work at the gym but aren’t seeing any improvements in your performance, take a step back and look at your sleep. Sleep, or a lack of quality sleep, is more closely connected to your weight and body composition than most people realise. If you don’t get enough sleep, you risk affecting your metabolism, insulin sensitivity (how your body processes sugar), food cravings, muscle recovery, hormone profile and performance. Try to allow at least two to three hours after dinner before going to bed and keep TVs and phones out of the bedroom – your bedroom should be for sleep and sex only. Keeping your room cool and dark also counts – both light and heat can disrupt your body clock. If you’re exercising regularly, getting at least eight hours of sleep will help you feel energised, work out harder and build lean muscle more effectively.” – Hollie Grant, founder of Pilates PT & The Bump Plan


Just Move

“It’s unlikely you’re going to wake up wanting to smash a workout every day. In fact, taking regular rest days is important for results. On those days when a high-intensity workout feels impossible, aim to get in at least 7,000 steps. The benefits of walking are underrated and, once you’re moving, you won’t regret it.” – Lauren Hills, PT


Be Consistent

“One of the most common mistakes I see people making is not staying consistent with exercise. It’s about striking a balance between keeping the body challenged without overdoing it. It sounds corny but, to see results, fitness must become a way of life. Each morning, think about what you can realistically commit to – maybe it’s a run, a weights session, or a walk? Make it a habit to find movement daily. Set yourself realistic goals along the way that are attainable within a reasonable timeframe. Celebrate your progress, be patient with yourself and prioritise enjoyment.” – Lucie Cowan, master trainer at Third Space


Always Listen To Your Body

“You don’t need to go hard every day to see results. In fact, overtraining can lead to physical and mental exhaustion, increased risk of injury, and decreased motivation to exercise. Pay attention to how your body responds to your workouts and learn to recognise signs of fatigue or burnout. Allow yourself adequate rest days to recover and give your muscles time to repair and grow stronger. Rest is just as important as the actual exercise when it comes to achieving progress and staying consistent. It’s when we rest that we grow back stronger.” – Lucie


Keep Your Cardio Fresh

“Many people still fall into the trap of focusing solely on cardio while neglecting strength training or go the other way and just focus on strength. A balanced combination of the two is the key for results. Cardio is a proven way to improve heart health and burn calories, while strength training builds lean muscle mass, which increases your metabolic rate, leading to more efficient fat burning. Plus, having stronger muscles will improve your performance in cardio activities, reducing the risk of injury and promoting better overall fitness. Just focusing on cardio can neglect certain muscle groups and create muscular imbalances. Strike a balance between the two throughout the week.” – Lucie


Exercise With Intent

“When using weights, isolating the muscle you are targeting by focusing your attention on it can supercharge results. Known as the mind-to-muscle connection, try slowing down your movements to feel what you are doing – this will fire up your neurological pathways and send signals to your muscle fibres to contract. This, in turn, will improve the quality of your movement and make your workout more efficient and effective. First, slow down. Rushing reps makes you less efficient. Second, actively think about the muscle you want to work and focus on training the muscle, not lifting the weight.” – Liberty

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