Maintaining a healthy, fit, and lean body will never go out of fashion. But just like clothing and furniture, fitness styles come and go. Some, like yoga, have been around for thousands of years and seem to be sticking it out for the long haul.
We can’t wait to see what fitness trends become popular in the year 2019, but first, let’s take a look at the fitness trends of 2018.
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1. Functional Fitness
Forget focusing on specific muscle groups. Functional fitness is all about training the body to become stronger and more efficient at completing daily tasks and common movements.
The idea is that when specific muscle groups get all the focus, it can lead to bad posture and poor functioning of other muscle groups. The whole point of exercise is to improve your quality of life so that you can function better, not worse.
Functional fitness exercises incorporate many muscle groups at once in exercises that mimic common movements you would do at home. It also emphasizes core stability, which is vital for good balance and posture and a healthy back.
Some functional fitness exercises include lunges, squats, step-ups, agility drills, and plyometrics.
2. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
HIIT was on trend in 2017, and it made its way into 2018’s top fitness trends as well. High-intensity interval training is a popular choice for a reason—it’s quick, it’s efficient, and it helps you to reach your goal fast.
Whether you’re looking to lose weight, boost endurance, build muscle tone, or increase strength, HIIT workouts can get you there.
A HIIT workout includes short bursts of very high-intensity exercise followed by slower periods that include either less-intense activity or complete rest. During each burst of hard work, you need to push yourself as hard as you can for a short period of time—between 20 and 90 seconds.
Studies show that HIIT workouts are much more effective than steady-state cardio when it comes to both losing weight and building muscle. Three 20-minute HIIT workouts per week can help you reach your goal faster than three 30-minute steady-state cardio sessions per week.
For a really simple HIIT workout, next time you go for a run, try alternating between full-out, run-as-fast-as-you-can sprints for one minute followed by 2 minutes of power-walking. Alternate until you have completed 10 sets (30 minutes).
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