How small changes can improve your fitness

Girl skipping outside | Small changes to improve your fitness | Tesco Living

From swimming and cycling to tennis and walking – get more from your workout with these simple tweaks.

Improve your tennis game

Try a long rally competition rather than a standard match. By keeping the ball bouncing back and forth, you’ll have to move about a lot more than if you’re going for a winner every time.

Get more from cycling

Flat surface? Make the most of your ride on the flat by doing speed and intensity intervals. Cycle fast (safely) for one minute then ease off. Then try cycling at the same speed, but uphill or in a higher gear.

Skipping workout

Okay, so maybe you haven’t picked up a skipping rope since primary school but it’s a great way to get fit, burning around 130 calories in 10 minutes.

Try forward jumps, then backward, followed by run skipping. Then start jumping to the left and right each time the rope passes by before trying a star jump, spreading your legs apart or together with each jump. Try to keep going for at least 10-15 minutes without stopping.

Swimming workout

Different strokes target different areas in swimming, so here’s a rough rule of thumb to make it easier: backstroke for posture, crawl for cardio, breaststroke for leg-toning and butterfly for core.

Try using only your arms for one length and then only your legs on the way back to give them both a tough ride – and don’t stop swimming for at least half an hour to get the maximum benefit.

Running

When it comes to running, mix long, slow, jogging sessions with sprints to make the most from your time outside. You’ll burn fat with a low slow run for 40 minutes but more calories from doing high intensity sprints for 20 minutes.

Walking

Brisk is best on the walking front and intervals are the key. Plan to do a 30-minute walk and break it up into bursts of high-speed power walking for 4-5 minutes split up with 1-2 minute slow walking breaks. Carry weights or a backpack to make things a bit tougher. Also, give hiking or beach walking a go – the uneven ground will work your muscles even more.

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