One Simple Change to Make Your Workouts More Effective

This easy tip will boost fat loss!

Increase the intensity of your workouts and lose more weight!

No matter how long you’ve been working out, there’s one thing we all have in common: We all want results! There will be days where you kick butt, but there are also those days where you ride the struggle bus all the way through. These ups and downs are totally normal, but sometimes the rut you’re in lasts more than a few days. In those cases, try this one simple change that you can try to make your workouts more effective! 

One Simple Change to Make Your Workouts More Effective

One Simple Change to Make Your Workouts More Effective is to perform active rests.

This simple change is a great way to increase the intensity of your workouts. In terms of losing weight, elevating the intensity of a routine is an excellent way to burn more fat. What’s even better about this tip is that it doesn’t require any extra equipment: All you need is your own body weight!

So, what is it? Two words: Active rests!

What’s active rest? It’s pretty simple. Instead of taking a break in between sets or rounds, perform an aerobic exercise instead. Active rests can be performed during steady-state cardio (like walking outside or on a treadmill) or during resistance training workouts. Before we go over how to incorporate active rests into your routine, let’s take a look at some examples.

Active Rests that Only Require Body Weight

Here are some examples of active rest body weight exercises that you can perform.

  • Jumping Jacks
  • Burpees
  • Mountain Climbers
  • Sprints
  • Step-Ups
  • Speed Skaters
  • Butt Kicks
  • Squat Jumps
  • Plyometric Lunges
  • Push-Ups
  • Side Lunges
  • Jogging in Place
  • High Knees
  • Sprints

Active Rests that Require Additional Equipment

If you have access to additional equipment, feel free to utilize it during your active rests. Here are some examples of things you can do:

  • Kettlebell Swings
  • Kettlebell Push Press
  • Battle Rope
  • Box Jumps
  • Single Unders (Jump Rope)
  • Double Unders (Jump Rope)
  • Sprints (Treadmill)
  • Stair Climber
  • Elliptical
  • Bike
  • Ladder

How to Incorporate Active Rests Into Your Routine

Incorporating active rests into your workout is really simple. You can take your current routine and simply swap in active rests wherever you had inactive rests before. Or, if you don’t have a routine yet, we have plenty of options to choose from. 

Here’s what a total body resistance training workout with active rests might look like:

What to do: Perform 3 sets of 10 reps for each exercise. In between sets, perform each active rest for 30 to 60 seconds. Move immediately to the next set after you complete your active rest to keep the intensity up! After you finish all three sets of each exercise and active rest, move on to the next exercise.

  1. Dumbbell Squats

Active Rest: Jumping Jacks

  1. Dumbbell Shoulder Press

Active Rest: Butt Kicks

  1. Dumbbell Rows

Active Rest: Mountain Climbers

  1. Dumbbell Deadlifts

Active Rest: Jogging in Place

  1. Dumbbells Chest Press

Active Rest: Jump Squats

  1. Dumbbell Bicep Curls

Active Rest: Kettlebell Swings

  1. Dumbbell Tricep Overhead Press

Active Rest: Burpees

  1. Plank

Active Rest: Speed Skaters

Performing active rests will increase the intensity of your workouts and help you burn more calories and fat! If you’ve never tried it before, we highly recommend giving it a shot!

If you try this one simple change to make your workouts more effective, we’d love to hear how you feel. Do you feel like you’re getting more out of your routine? Are you sweating more? Losing more weight? We want to know! Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Erin Miller

Erin is an NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Corrective Exercise Specialist. She is also a Performance Nutrition Coach, certified through the Clean Health Fitness Institute. Some of Erin’s favorite hobbies include hiking, kayaking, and hanging out at the beach, although weight lifting is her greatest passion. She says, “Weight training is one of the most empowering things a person can do. Not just seeing, but feeling yourself transform… There’s just nothing else like it.”

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    1. Teresa,

      Active rest could be most anything that doesn’t involve high intensity moves. Try walking in place or moving your arms as if you are doing jumping jacks.

  1. You can do one leg out at a time instead of jumping out with both legs. Move your arms as you would during a regular jumping jacks. I love Low impact options and I have low impact options for almost everything

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