Obviously, we’re big fans of working out here at Sporteluxe. Uhm, hi, it’s kind of implied by our name. I can safely say that everyone on our team is somewhere between fitness enthusiast and fitness expert—we’ve collectively tried every workout under the sun, and usually loved doing it.
Personally, I’ve always been really active. I tend to get obsessed with an activity—like running, or hot yoga, or Soulcycle—and hit it on repeat every day for months. When I do kick off a new fitness chapter, I usually see crazy changes in my body … for better or for worse. But eventually, if I decide to only do one type of exercise, I notice that my body starts adapting to my workout and I stop seeing physical results.
That’s totally OK—I work out because I want to feel good physically and emotionally, not necessarily because I want a Kayla Itsines-style six-pack (although that would be dope…). But I’ve noticed that sometimes we fall into a workout routine that just doesn’t work for us anymore—not only do we not see physical changes, but we stop loving exercise, too. Kind of misses the point, right?
Here are four ways to know if your workout is actually working for you, or if it’s time to switch things up.
A key sign that your workout is still working for you? You’re sleeping soundly every night. Regular exercise can regulate your hormones, which control everything from your mood to your reaction to stress to how well you sleep. Not sleeping well? Your workout might not be challenging you enough … or you’re overdoing it. Fatigue coupled with insomnia—feeling tired, but not being able to fall asleep—is a sign of adrenal fatigue and likely means you’re exercising too much without ample recovery time.
It’s happened to all of us—we’re used to crushing our regularly scheduled workouts, and we’re feeling pretty good about our fitness level. And then a friend invites you to try a new method, and despite how fit you know you are that new exercise seems really, really hard. One sign that your workout is helping you is that it helps improve your overall fitness—not just your ability to do one type of exercise or movement. You want to be able to do anything that the instructor throws at you! Don’t get discouraged if you try something new and it totally wrecks you. That just means it’s time to integrate other forms of movement into your fitness routine.
A surefire way to tell that all those hours in the gym are worth something? Physical changes in your body. These changes can vary greatly, but include fat loss, muscle growth, improved skin tone and texture, lowered heart rate, and an improved response to stress.
Most importantly, you should feel amazing after your workouts. Even if it felt like torture while you were in the zone, when you walk out the door that rush of post-workout endorphins should make you feel like you can tackle anything.