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Developing a workout routine you enjoy can be a process of trial and error. Oftentimes, it can be a long process. Most people try a variety of activities and find that there are some they like, and some they definitely do not. Certain exercises (both moves and specific workouts) have developed a reputation of being fundamental to any challenging and well-rounded workout routine, though. Does that mean you have to struggle through even though you dread them, just because they are exercises you think you should be doing?
Certainly not! The good news is that if you don't like
9 Exercises We Love to Hate
1. Mountain climbers
This classic heart-rate-boosting move is a challenge, especially if you have difficulty getting up and down from the floor. Standing versions can still get your heart rate up effectively while putting less pressure on your arms and wrists. Elevating your heart rate to a comparable level is what matters most when finding alternatives for this exercise.
Alternatives: high knees, standing mountain climbers, jumping jacks
Running is often viewed as the gold standard when it comes to cardio exercise, primarily because it requires no equipment and burns a lot of calories in a short period of time. Whether you've tried running and just don't like it, your knees say "No, thank you," or you'd prefer only to run when being chased by a grizzly bear, rest assured that there are lots of other cardio options out there. Try an activity that's a little more low-impact, or something like
Alternatives: swimming, biking,
Planks are an effective core exercise because they work your muscles in the way that you actually use them in everyday life. However, they can be quite challenging and frustrating if you can only hold the position for a few seconds before your arms give out. Lucky for you, there are so many variations of this powerhouse move that you might not need to cut the plank out completely—just experiment until you find the right variation that works for you. If you really want to make planks a part of your routine, try planks on your elbows or with
Alternatives: boat pose, dolphin pose, lying straight leg lowers <
Alternatives: skaters, modified
Some people aren't comfortable with the balance challenge of the split-leg position of a traditional lunge or just don't like how their body feels while doing them. If
While they target multiple muscle groups at once and can give you the chiseled arms of your dreams, pushups aren't for everyone. They put pressure on the wrists, and, let's face it, they are really hard! Whether you want to work up to a traditional
Alternatives: bear crawls, chest
7. Jump Squats
The primary purpose of a jump squat is to get your heart rate up quickly and condition your body for explosive movements. Other
Alternatives: squats with knee lift,
Alternatives: renegade rows, preacher curls, inverted rows
If you're not into the idea of exercising with a group of like-minded sweaters in a loud room, spinning might not be the activity for you. While some people are motivated by working out in a group where someone else picks the music and tells them what to do and when, others prefer that their workouts be a solitary experience, a time to be alone with their thoughts and their favorite playlist. If spinning and other group fitness classes aren't your thing, try getting outside for a solo workout in the fresh air or hop on a new piece of cardio equipment at the gym that looks interesting.
Alternatives: outdoor biking, elliptical, HIIT
Whether you're a fan of heavy weights, long runs,
For every exercise out there, you'll find someone who loves it and someone who dreads it. For every exercise out there, you'll also find numerous alternatives, though, so don't be afraid to try something new. Having preferences is what makes each of us unique, so get creative and embrace your workout preferences instead of fighting them.