Incredible ways to increase your stamina
Stamina is the strength and energy that allow you to sustain physical or mental effort for long periods of time. Increasing your stamina helps you endure discomfort or stress when you’re doing an activity. It also reduces fatigue and exhaustion. Having high stamina allows you to perform your daily activities at a higher level while using less energy.
Whether you’re training for a marathon or chasing a toddler around the house, there are plenty of reasons to want more stamina. Often referred to as endurance, stamina is your ability to sustain a physical or mental effort for a long period of time. If you’ve been experiencing a personal energy crisis lately (outside of dealing with your utility bills), developing your endurance might be just the thing for recovering your zing.We all love to be energetic. We have our favourite athletes and sportsmen whose energy we can’t help but marvel at. We get tired merely by climbing two floors and for them, even twenty would be a cake walk.
Whenever one mentions the word ‘stamina’, what comes to our mind is physical strength. We do not associate the word to mental exertion. However, mental stamina is as important as your physical stamina. The mental aspect of enduring exertion is referred to as endurance. Endurance and stamina are two sides of the same coin and cannot go without each other.
Reduce Recovery Time And Resistance
To build muscle endurance, limit your recovery time between sets to 30 to 90 seconds. Want to kick things up a notch? Take the recovery time — and the weight — down a notch. Less resistance, more repetitions and resting for 30 seconds or less between exercises is optimal for building stamina, a 2006 article in the Journal of Strength Conditioning and Research concluded. In other words, embrace those circuit workouts!
Cutting your recovery time and pushing yourself during a workout are great steps toward having more stamina, but don’t forget that your body still deserves some R&R. “You want to train hard, but if you end up training hard every day, you might find that the intensity you put out gets lower and lower,” says Erica Giovinazzo, registered dietitian and crossfit coach at Brick New York. If you find your marathon gym sessions are adversely affecting your performance, take it easy for a day. “Rest, go for a light run, bike ride, swim or take a yoga class instead of going all out,” suggests Giovinazzo.
Ratchet Up Intensity
“There is a time and a place for keeping a steady pace, but if you really want to increase stamina, then increase the intensity,” advises Giovinazzo. To accomplish that, she recommends doing short intervals at a sprint pace. “[It] could be running, rowing, biking or doing other kinds of exercises — such as burpees, squats or even push-ups,” she says. “Whatever [you do], you’ll know you’ve increased the intensity when you’re out of breath and feel that good burning sensation in whatever muscles are being worked.”
Remember ‘Frequency + Duration’
Feeling the burn after an intense (but short) bout of burpees is a sign you’re working your muscles. But hey, don’t forget the other two components that comprise the stamina-building trifecta: frequency and duration. Make sure you’re not only going all-out one day per week, but that you’re meeting the American College of Sports Medicine’s recommendation, which includes doing three to five workouts weekly (each for 20-plus minutes).
Think: Mind Over Matter
Another important way to increase your stamina is to use the power of your mind. “Our minds are the key to either pushing our bodies or stopping short,” says Giovinazzo. “If we want to increase stamina, we have to be willing to push the envelope. [And] to do that, we need willingness and determination.”
Remember to take things slow
Increasing stamina is not a process that can happen on spur of moment. You have to be patient and take things slow. If you are planning to increase it with exercise and have learned new exercises, don’t push your body to do 20 sets at once. Take your time and let your body adapt to it at its own sweet pace.
For many, stamina is simply about being physically active. That’s not true. This is because in order to work out and perform exercises effectively, your body needs its fuel, that is, nutrition. Go for low-fat, high protein and more raw foods.
Make sure to include carbs
Never skip on carbs. They are essential for muscle building. Also, they increase starch and sugar in your body, boosting your stamina and endurance in turn. So, it is good to have grains, pastas, brown breads and cereals.
Start with things you love
Are you a dance person or a yoga person? Well, pick what you love. Be it Zumba, aerobics, badminton, tennis, cricket, or gyming, if you love what you do, you will not need any other motivation to get at it.
Be regular with your work out
Experts say that to maintain a minimal level of fitness, you must work out for at least 30 minutes a day and 5 days a week. You have to be determined as stamina building will take time and you don’t have to lose patience till you are there.
Limit your ‘rest’ time
Though resting is essential and is called the repair time for your body, start decreasing it gradually. If, let’s say, you take rest for two minutes after three sets of an exercise, reduce the duration to one minute, 30 seconds. Then after a few weeks, reduce it to a minute and so on.
However, take proper rest
Limiting your rest time in between sets doesn’t mean that you don’t have to rest your body. You should never strain your body beyond the limit it can go to. If you think you can’t take as much stress, it is better to halt. Also, always make sure that you get a good night’s sleep. Sleeping enough is the most essential step towards a healthier living but often people disregard it. If you want to build stamina, you should never do that.
Eat multiple times a day
Try to have a five-meal policy with smaller portions rather than a three-meal policy with bigger portions. This will improve your body’s metabolism as there will be a continuous supply of energy. Also, if you eat big portions, your body is likely to get sluggish post that.
Never skip on breakfast
You must understand the importance of breakfast in your diet. It is the most essential meal of the day. You should have a combination of proteins, fats and carbohydrates in the morning.
Walk after your meals
Walk slowly after you eat and try to maintain a gap of 20 minutes between eating and walking. This helps your body digest the food that you have eaten and helps it stay free of toxins. This is an essential part of building stamina.
Maintain a gap of two to three hours between dinner and sleep
You should never sleep after eating as it leads to accumulation of fat in your body. Make it a thumb rule to always maintain a gap of at least two hours between your dinner and sleep. This will boost your metabolism and enhance digestion.
Get a stamina test
If you think that you are person who would like to go by figures, you can get your stamina checked. You can do a pre- and post- test if you are following a certain regime and want to see how much it has improved your performance.
This is not just a tip to boost stamina but should be a thumb rule for lifetime. Staying positive has proven to boost results in a positive way. Also, when you stay optimistic, your stress levels are lower. This translates into better performance and hence, better stamina.