Find the Right Workout For Your Mood

FITNESS  |  September 25, 2016
  • Upbeat?
    1 / 6 Upbeat?

    It’s that golden feeling – you’re confident, on top of the world, full of positive energy and ready for action.

    Mood match: Now’s the perfect time to try something new, whether it’s squash, touch footy, rock climbing or kayaking. Alternatively, try pushing yourself a bit harder in your usual workout. Embrace those periods when you’re feeling great to push yourself harder. For example, if you usually run for 20 minutes, build up gradually to avoid injuiry and see if you do your run a bit faster.

    Photo: Alexey Poprotsky/123rf.com

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  • Stressed?
    2 / 6 Stressed?

    You’re working day and night on a big project, or rushed off your feet at home and can’t think about exercise, let alone spare the time to do it.

    Mood match: Try something that gets you outdoors. Experts say at the end of a busy day, you might feel too exhausted to exercise but it’s often mental fatigue, not physical. So try going for a walk with your partner and your dog, or take your kids to the park for a run-around. Another approach is to squeeze in a sweaty workout in a short space of time. If you workout regularly and only have 15 minutes, do a five-minute warm-up, run as hard as you can for 10 minutes, then cool down.

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  • Angry?
    3 / 6 Angry?

    Whether it’s an argument with your partner or work that’s frustrating you, you’re angry and can’t concentrate on your usual workout.

    Mood match: Go for high-intensity exercises. It’s a great way to relax and sometimes you need to go really hard to get right of that energy. Try circuit training or do intervals but if you’re at the gym, do 30 seconds of high-intesity pedalling and 90 seconds of low-intensity pedelling. Steer clear of boxing classes until you’ve calmed down as research finds that venting via a punching bag actually increases angry feelings.

    (For a great high-intensity workout, check out Jamie Teo’s Super Effective 12-Minute Circuit Training Workout)

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  • Down In The Dumps?
    4 / 6 Down In The Dumps?

    Life’s a bit of a drag at the moment, and you’re too upset to do anything active.

    Mood match: You may not feel like it but being active is likely to life your spirits. Research shows that exercise can help mild to moderate depression and more rhythmical exercise rather than stop-start classes tend to be better, so try walking or swimming. A yoga class is another good idea. Yoga has been shownt o reduce anxiety levels – the psychological and well-being benefits of it are well known.

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  • Chilled Out?
    5 / 6 Chilled Out?

    That peaceful, calm feeling is lovely – but it doesn’t always lend itself to a sweaty workout.

    Mood match: When you’re having a mellow moment, it’s a really great time to focus on flexibility. Turn on some music and do half and hour of stretching at home. It’s wonderfully relaxing and important for those with sedentary lifestyles. Most people suffer from tight hamstrings and lower back, so incorporate stretches that work those areas. If you wear high heels all day or spend lots of time hunched over at a desk, it’s important to stretch out your calves or chest too.

    Photo: energepic/Pixabay

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  • Unmotivated?
    6 / 6 Unmotivated?

    You’ve hit a plateau this week and just can’t face up to that walk around the block for the fourth day in a row.

    Mood match: The best way to avoid that “can’t be bothered” feeling is to make physical activity a part of your daily life. That way, you don’t think about it as something you have to do, it just becomes habitual and something that you do naturally. For example, take up gardening or walk the kids to school every day. If it’s a lifestyle change you’re more likely to stick to it. Look out for dance classes too. Dancing is a brilliant exercise that most people don’t often think about.

    Photo: Anastasia Vish/123rf.com

    A version of this story first appeared on The Singapore Women’s Weekly website.

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