Keeping yourself motivated when you start a workout routine is hard to do, especially if you’re not instantly seeing the results you want. But ultimately they take time, and there are non-physical signs you should be aware of that show your fitness levels are improving.
When you’re looking at your body every day in the mirror, it can be difficult to see small changes in your physique which can be disheartening, but if you’re putting in the hard work then good results will undeniably follow.
It might take some time, but your body will reward you for working hard, and you’ll see changes. But if you need some encouragement to keep going, these signs will show you that you’re getting better even if you aren’t currently seeing the changes.
British and National Wrestling Champion and owner of Right Path Fitness, Keith McNiven shares the five signs that your fitness level is improving.
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One of the best things about consistently working out is that it gives you more energy every single day and can help you feel fantastic. Exercising not only releases endorphins which make you feel on top of the world, but it helps to refresh your energy levels and keep you energised throughout the day. You’ll be able to tell that your fitness levels are improving as waking up in the morning becomes easier, you’re no longer desperate for that extra cup of coffee and you find yourself feeling less and less tired throughout the day - especially on days where you’ve managed to fit in a workout.
Manage more repetitions
Whether you’re squatting, bench pressing, sprinting or doing stomach crunches, you’ll notice that as your fitness improves, so will your repetitions. Whilst you may have struggled to manage one burpee at the start of your fitness journey, a few weeks down the line you may find yourself managing 5 with ease. Fitness is about marginal gains, consistent work and pushing yourself. Be sure to notice when you’re managing that extra repetition in the gym and to give yourself a pat on the back, because that means your fitness level is improving.
Looking forward to your workout
Exercising can be a daunting task for absolutely anyone - let alone those who are relatively new to the world of fitness. There are so many different machines and exercises, combined with plenty of people in the gym who seem to know exactly what they’re doing, so it can be intimidating. However, once you get into a routine and figure out what works for you, what you like to do and how to workout to suit your body, you’ll begin to look forward to your workouts. You’ll start to associate working out with feeling great and seeing results - and that’s when you know you’re getting fitter.
We’re sure that you’ll have come into contact with some form of weights in the gym. Whether you’re using weighted machines, free weights or a barbell for more complex weightlifting moves, it’s incredibly common to implement some form of weight training into your workout. As your fitness level improves, you’ll notice that you’re lifting your usual weight more easily, and you might even need to lift or work with heavier weights to feel the same tension that you’re used to from your workout. This is an amazing sign and it means that you’re getting fitter - rapidly too!
Cardio is a great way to really see your fitness levels improving. From power walking to jogging, rowing to working on the cross trainer, there are a number of ways to implement cardio into your routine. To put it simply, when your fitness levels are improving, you’ll be able to engage in cardio exercises for longer than you could before. You’ll find yourself able to run 5 minutes instead of 3, row 10 instead of 8 or perhaps climb 40 floors instead of 30 on the step machine. What was once a struggle will suddenly become a little easier, and you’ll find yourself pushing harder to maximise your workout.
When your fitness levels are improving, you may also see some changes in your body. Whether your clothes fit a little better or your colleagues notice a glow about you - be sure to applaud yourself for every small change associated with your hard work. Fitness journeys aren’t easy, but they sure are worth it - so stick with it, be consistent and most importantly of all, have fun.