5 Simple Steps to Boost Your Workouts

Are you struggling to fit in your workouts every week? And even when you do manage to squeeze one in, (possibly tired at the end of a long day) do you have the energy for an hour-long session? Nope. Didn’t think so. Instead, choosing to do a short 10-15 minute workout daily (which I definitely recommend), can really help with consistency. But there are additional steps you can take to ensure you are making the most out of these shorter workouts.

1. Engage Your Core

Engaging your core muscles (which are in the body’s centre of gravity) help with balance and posture, both of which are crucial to avoid injury (especially in the back) during your workout and to promote confidence in movement. Engaging your core during exercise helps to stabilise the spine and improve mobility. An open and upright posture is linked to feeling positive, powerful and in control but is also an important part of your workouts to ensure good form – particularly in ballet-inspired workouts. 

We all know that exercise is a powerful way to improve mood and reduce the symptoms of depression and anxiety. If this is your reason for exercising, research suggests that any way of moving that activates the core muscles sends a message connected to the adrenal glands via the brain to help regulate stress. The core is the area of the body where almost all our internal organs are found, which means it is the point of origin of the senses we experience – like butterflies when we are nervous, or tummy ache when we are worried – that update our brain about how things are going inside the body. It’s not clear how this works yet but engaging the core seems to tell the body to calm down.

The simplest way to engage your core is to brace yourself as though you’re waiting to receive a strong punch to your tummy and then breathe into your stomach. Your core also engages naturally just before you cough or laugh, so you can practice this to get an idea of how your core feels when it’s engaged.

2. Activate your brain

Movement in the body originates in the brain, so thinking about the muscles you’re engaging while you’re performing an exercise helps you stay in the zone. Visualising the muscles activating as you perform the move, helps to recruit more muscle fibres during your workout. For example, if you’re doing a plie (bending your knees with your feet turned out) actually think about your thighs and glutes squeezing (your thighs are rotating outwards and your glutes are squeezing together like you are trying to hold a penny between your butt cheeks!) as you bend to make sure you’re using good form and the muscles you’re trying to engage are actually doing the work (rather than letting other muscle groups take over).

3. Massage your feet

Before your ballet-inspired workouts (or any movement that requires you to point your feet), roll a golf ball under your foot. You can do this sitting down, kneeling, or standing up depending on the level of pressure you can tolerate. This releases the fascia (the connective tissue encasing your muscles) under your feet so you can move better and avoid cramp during your workout. 

4. Fully hydrate

The body is made up of about 60% water, so we need to keep it hydrated before, during and after our workouts. When you’re properly hydrated it helps to keep the body temperature regulated. If you’re dehydrated, you’re going to get hot very quickly during your workouts. Your heart is also having to work a lot harder. Being properly hydrated also helps to move nutrients around the body. It keeps the joints nicely lubricated.

5. Prioritise recovery

Getting enough sleep (and good quality sleep) is important to help the body recover. If you are not getting sufficient sleep, you are more likely to get injured during your workout and your motivation will most definitely be lacking. If you are fatigued you are also less likely to be working out in the first place. You’re not going to be able to give it your all in your workout if you are sleep deprived. Ideally, aim for 7-8 hours of sleep a night but don’t let these numbers cause you unnecessary stress if you are not there yet. What’s important is to listen to your body and if you have had a restless night, go a bit easier on your exercise. Equally if you have gone hard with your exercise, make sure you give yourself time to rest.

Breaking Ballet’s unique ballet-inspired workouts are tailored for perimenopausal and menopausal women to help them future proof their bodies at the same time as looking after the here and now.

Sarah is the founder of Breaking Ballet, a unique online ballet fitness programme for busy women.

Join the 21 Day Body Reboot programme here to hit the re-set button and venture into a whole new world of balance, grace, confidence and powerful elegance

If you want to take your health and fitness to the next level with a wide variety of short ballet-inspired workouts, easy to follow weekly workout calendars and THE most supportive community of like-minded women online, check out the BBackstage membership here https://breakingballet.com/bbackstage
BBackstage is our online ballet workouts membership that includes monthly/weekly workout calendars, a variety of workouts to choose from, healthy recipes and meal plans, guest experts, mindset tools and relaxation techniques, weekly Q&A with Sarah, a supportive loving community, and more.

Join our free weekly newsletter here to help you change your relationship with exercise for optimal health and fitness in your 40s and beyond.

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/BreakingBallet/
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/breakingballet/
YOUTUBE: http://www.youtube.com/c/BreakingBallet



Get my Total Ballet Body Workout challenge


Join my free Facebook community for busy women looking to improve their health and fitness in a sustainable way


Subscribe to the Smart Women Connect Podcast with Virginia Czarnocki and Sarah Aspinall
Let's Connect on Social:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Unlock the secret to consistent fitness in this FREE guide