WATCH: Toronto fitness expert and author of ‘Finding Your Fit’, Kathleen Trotter, weighed in on what she thinks will be the top picks for gym-goers and health enthusiasts in spring 2017.
Spring is in the air and many of us are headed outside to shed the pounds we gained over the winter.
With warmer temperatures on the rise, many people are ready to kick-start their spring fitness goals.
Every year the fitness industry seems to churn out new and exciting ways to keep people interested and invested while they’re working out.
So what will be hot for spring 2017 in terms of ways to workout? We checked in with two health professionals for their take.
What to expect for spring 2017
“The newer trend of a combination of machine cardio and weight training classes — such as OrangeTheory and Barry’s Bootcamp — has been growing in popularity for years. This trend will only grow in popularity over the spring and summer,” Trotter explains.
The combination of cardio exercise and weight training in one class will be a hit among fitness enthusiasts who don’t have a lot time, Trotter added.
“We all have enough reasons to skip a workout and we don’t need boredom,” Trotter says. “I love trying new classes. One way I stay motivated is by going on what I call ‘fitventures’ with friends. Sampling different classes ensures that I see friends and allows me to do research without feeling like I am working.”
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Trotter says everyone should get out and enjoy the weather this spring. “Cycle, play a sport, Rollerblade or just go for a walk. The added bonus is that both sunshine and exercise are mood boosters. So you will not only feel stronger, but also happier.”
Working out consistently helps to reach a health goal. “Going for one run on the first day of spring will not shed stubborn pounds,” Trotter warns.
Many people prefer to do HIIT cardio sessions in the spring. Marissa Liana Beaulne, a Courtice, Ont.-based certified nutritional practitioner and practicing holistic nutritionist, says that research has shown this is one of the best ways to torch fat while maintaining your hard-earned muscle.
“I love to go to the track and do high intensity intervals such as one minute of running followed by 30 seconds of sprinting (2:1 ratio). As you become more advanced, you can cut the rest-to-work ratio down – for example: one minute of rest, one minute of sprinting (1:1 ratio)”
Beaulne says that wearable fitness technology that helps you track your fitness and progress will be popular this spring.
“I personally fell in love with this trend when I started wearing my FitBit daily during the month of January. Not only does this device keep track of my steps, it monitors my sleep duration, calories burned, and heart rate.”
She says that these devices are beneficial if you’re looking to meet a goal weight because you can compare your calories burned to your calories consumed.
Upcoming Fitness Trends To Lookout For
Trotter predicts that the next fitness trends to watch out for include recovery-style classes that use yoga tune up balls and foam rollers.
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“These tools help individuals massage their aches and pains away. These classes have a wide demographic — from the older population who are stiff, to athletes who need help recovering, to the vast majority of the population who sit. We basically all sit too much — our bodies hurt,” Trotter says.
Beaulne also says to watch out for foam rolling. “More people including myself are falling in love with self-healing applications after an intense training regime. While foam rolling isn’t a new technology, it hasn’t been until recently that more health and fitness experts are advocating their benefits,” she said.
Foam rolling is a technique used to inhibit overactive muscles. A foam roller is an inexpensive piece of equipment that can help you with everything from working out the knots in your muscles to strengthening your core.
By slowly rolling over various areas of your body, you’ll help break up adhesions and scar tissue and speed up the healing and recovery process after your workout.
“Foam rolling is an inexpensive way to help improve mobility of the muscle fascia, the fibrous layer of our muscles that can become tight and knotted from intense training,” Beaulne explains. “Through low load dragging forces of the foam roller against the muscle, tissue knots are released and mobility improves which can greatly reduce recovery time and soreness.”
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Trotter also mentions Pilates classes that use the Megaformer M3 will increase in popularity. The Megaformer M3 is the machine used in Pilates workouts to help build strength, endurance, flexibility and balance.
“The class is done on the Megaformer M3, a longer, wider, and more versatile version of the Reformer. If you like Pilates, but are looking for a faster-paced, more-intense workout, classes done on the Megaformer might be for you.”
“Recovery classes, Megaformer classes, and cardio/weight classes are usually offered at ’boutique’ training facilities. These innovative and specialized studios are a trend that will only continue to gain popularity,” Trotter says.
“These specialty and ‘fun’ classes are a positive addition to the fitness field because when it comes to training boredom is the kiss of death.”
Advice for beginners this spring
With summer just around the corner, getting fit is on many people’s minds even if they aren’t used to working out.
Trotter suggests that you listen to your body, progress gradually, be smart and prioritize recovery. She says that eating well, sleeping, staying hydrated and making sure you stretch is very important.
“Working out is a stress on the body. It is a positive stress if you give it the tools needed for recovery.”
Make sure to set reasonable goals and schedule your workouts into your calendar, Trotter advises.
Beaulne says that rest days are very important. “I think more people need to truly value and understand the importance of proper rest days when looking to meet their health and fitness goals.”
She says that in the gym or during a workout, we tear and break down muscle tissue. It isn’t until we’re resting that we can re-build and grow new, stronger muscle.
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Beaulne urges you to listen to your body and become more mindful on your fitness journey.
Habits don’t form overnight and consistency is key, Beaulne affirms.
“Don’t expect to see results after a day, and don’t get discouraged if changes don’t happen as quickly as you’d like. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about meeting your fitness goals, it’s to stay consistent and never give up. At the end of the day, your physique will reflect what you do most of the time.”
Trotter says that the best fitness routine is the one you will actually do.
“Running in the spring might be my bliss, but everyone has to find what works for them. Don’t commit to a regime because it’s appropriate for the season. Pick one that you like — or at least don’t hate — and one that is convenient enough that you will do it consistently.”