How to match your workouts to your mood

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Spin class / Shutterstock

Summer has officially arrived, and it seems as though everyone is scrambling to hit the gym in hopes of getting in shape quickly.

It can be tough when we really don’t feel like going to the gym, but did you know that one of the best ways to get optimal results at the gym is to cater your workout to your mood?

Depending on the type of mood you’re in, certain workouts are guaranteed to be exactly what you need. As our mood varies day to day, and we find ourselves either exhausted, frustrated, angry, sad or happy – here are five common moods we find ourselves in, and their perfect workout match:

1. Exhausted? Try strength or group training

One of the most common reasons people skip the gym is because they are tired. If you’re too tired to think or come up with a good workout plan, go to a group training workout class and let the instructor do the thinking for you. The instructor will tell you what to do, which takes some pressure off your tired mind.

If you’re really feeling fatigued, opt for a strength training group class. High-intensity cardio may be too ambitious if you’re feeling really low on energy, but strength training is still a great calorie-burning workout that is necessary to tone up for summer.

2. Stressed out? Do a spin class

Spin classes are a great option when you’re stressed. They’re mindless (you just pedal your heart out and change gears when the instructor says so) and they also require you to expend a lot of energy which you often feel is necessary when you’re stressed out.

The mindless aspect of a spin class allows you to think through your current problems during the class, as it’s easy to brainstorm if all you’re doing is pedalling (and you’re not required to follow complicated steps or movements). The fact that a spin class is a high-intensity cardio workout is perfect for releasing toxic negative energies and getting your frustrations out on the bike by going hard and fast.

3. Angry? Take a kickboxing class

Did someone piss you off today? Are you frustrated or angry about something? Kickboxing classes involve intense punching and kicking movements, perfect for the angry exerciser. Use that anger to drive your intensity in the class. In fact, the angrier you are, the better since you’ll likely have a more intense workout and burn more calories if you have a lot of steam you need to burn off.

4. Sad? Try a step class or an aerobics class

If you’re feeling low, one of the best things you can do to lift your mood is exercise. Exercise releases endorphins, so you’re guaranteed to leave the gym in a much better mood, and you’ll feel good about yourself for having done something productive.

Step classes and aerobics classes always have an upbeat energy, and they usually play uplifting and motivating music during the class. It will be the exact type of positive vibe you should surround yourself in if you’re in a sad mood.

5. Happy? Opt for a personal training session or something new

We won’t argue that a personal training session could be a bad idea if you’re sad or angry. We don’t want you biting off the head of your trainer during your session. However, if you’re in a great mood you’ll be very responsive to your trainer’s tips and instructions. You’ll work well with him or her if you’re feeling happy, which will result in a fantastic workout session.

Another great idea is to try something new if you find yourself hitting the gym in a great mood. It’s important to switch up your workout routine and do something different if you want results, so if you’re up for it, try following the routine on that new workout app, try a dance class or a new workout class you’ve always wanted to try.

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Erica Gordon Erica Gordon Majored in Psychology at UBC and has a passion for writing and journalism. She works in the glorious dating industry and moonlights as a freelance writer. You can read more of her articles and get an inside scoop into the minds of both sexes on her awesome advice column TheBabeReport.com or follow her on Instagram @ericaleighgordon.

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