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"I'm Totally Bored by the Gym" —Brett, 31, craft designer continued...

Your mind affects your workout. "I took a class by Patricia Moreno, and it was insane: She constantly tells you to fill your mind with positive thoughts — it prevents you from thinking the negative ones ("This hurts/I can't do it") that make you want to stop. It's like a Jedi mind trick, because I pushed myself harder than I ever knew I could — afterward, I was exhausted and weak but was so pumped up, even the entire next day."

After: 5 workouts per week
"Once I stopped making excuses and whining about working out" — a Moreno no-no — "I was able to be focused and diligent."

Trainer Johanna's Tips: Keep It Interesting

Long cardio workouts (Brett needed 45- to 60-minute sessions, since she does triathlons in the summer) shouldn't be boring. Brett did some interval workouts (systematically playing with speed and elevation) to improve running speed and endurance and make her workout time fly. Intervals also give each workout a purpose, which boosts motivation.

To increase muscular endurance for longer, stronger workouts, Brett did eight to 10 weight-training moves with very little rest in between.

"I Don't Have Time" —Larissa, 35, planner for a cosmetics company

Before: 0 workouts per week

"I start and stop exercise programs all the time — I have a demanding job, and I'm a mother of two. I have little room for sleep, much less exercise."

Her "Aha" Moments
Three days a week is unrealistic.
"In the beginning, my goal was to get to the gym three days a week, but I was just too busy. I commute three hours a day, so I have to go really early in the morning or come home really late, and I feel like my kids need me to be home with them. I fell short of my expectations and disappointed myself. So I took that goal back and committed to the gym twice a week. And, what do you know, every week after that, I achieved or even exceeded that goal, which was really motivating."

Working out at home is still a workout. "My cable company has free workouts on demand — everything from 10-minute ab routines to 60-minute cardio sessions. Exercising at home is so much easier. I'm totally discombobulated at the gym: The first day, I forgot a lock, so I was walking around with my purse, my workout program, and a bottle of water. I forgot a towel and was grossing myself out about other people's sweat on the machines."

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Heart Rate Calculator

Ensure you're exercising hard enough to get a good workout, but not strain your heart.

While you are exercising, you should count between...

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Beats
PER
Seconds