- Run faster for longer distances
- Lift heavier weights for more reps
- Take more prolonged, more strenuous hikes
- Push through perceived pain, discomfort, and fatigue
- Perform daily activities with high energy levels
Increase Your Running Distance or Time:
Go the distance for stamina. Because stamina combines endurance, speed, and strength, challenge yourself to maintain your usual running pace for a minute longer. When you can do that, add another minute. Your stamina should continue to improve this way for a while, although everyone has limits on how far and fast they can run.
Run Hills and Stairs:
If increasing your running distance or time doesn’t sound fun (we don’t blame you), vary the running instead. Adding hill runs to your routine can make a huge difference in your stamina if you live near hills or hiking trails. Alternatively, stairs and bleachers work, too. Running in an uphill manner challenges your lungs and legs alike.
Try High-Volume Weightlifting:
Studies show that volume is the number-one variable in resistance training that improves fitness. Volume refers to the total load you lift in a session, day, or week. It’s calculated by multiplying the weight by reps.
In general, continually increasing your volume benefits your fitness. For example, if you perform three sets of 10 squats at 100 pounds, find your total volume by multiplying three by 10 by 100. The total volume comes out to 3,000 pounds.
Decrease Rest Intervals During Workouts:
One surefire way to improve your stamina is to allow yourself less rest time (unless you’re lifting very heavy weights, in which case you should rest three to five minutes between sets for optimal strength gains).
Studies show that decreasing rest intervals while performing moderate- to high-intensity exercise increases physical performance and body composition. Shortening your rest interval forces you to perform more work in less time, which in theory, should support improvements in stamina.
Riding a bike in any fashion—mountain biking, road biking, or indoor cycling—can improve your stamina if you push the pace (and the terrain if you’re outside). Indoor cycling in particular is proven to increase aerobic capacity, a major contributor to stamina, as well as other health markers.
Mountain biking may be more effective at increasing muscular endurance and power due to the increased and variable resistance. Outdoor cycling in general can boost cardiovascular stamina, improving fitness levels and reducing the risks of cardiovascular disease.
Most sports require complex skill sets that may be outside your comfort zone. If you’re used to lifting weights, running, or other relatively monotonous movements, swapping one workout weekly for a sports game is a great way to hone other physical skills. Again, destructuring your fitness routine could if counterintuitively, improve your stamina and fitness.
For instance, a soccer game includes sprinting, jogging, walking, cutting, kicking, dodging, and even throwing, depending on your position. Intermingling these different movements provides a fun and challenging way to improve stamina.
Listen to Music While Exercising: (my fave!)
Everyone knows a good song can pump you up for your workout. Listening to music brings people joy and energy, and this remains true during exercise. Listening to upbeat music during your workout might boost your performance in a number of ways, from reducing your perception of fatigue distracting you from the strain of your workout, and making exercise feel easier
Drink Caffeine Before Exercising: (just a little)
If you’re looking for a one-off way to improve your stamina, consuming a bit of caffeine before your workout might help. Studies show caffeine is a great pre-workout supplement because it can increase your energy, mood, and physical capacities. However, the effect seems more significant in men than women and you should be careful not to become reliant on caffeine.
Don’t Forget to Rest and Recover:
Finally, make sure you have recovery days scheduled into your workout routine. Contrary to popular belief, the actual act of exercising isn’t what improves your fitness—it’s the repair and rebuild phase that does.
Rest days are critical to your improvement over time. If you perform an intense workout every day, your body never gets the chance to recover. Thus it never has the opportunity to repair your muscles.
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