When it comes to a killer workout, kickboxing is king. With its combination of power, agility and cardio, kickboxing has the ability completely transform your physical shape, as well as your outlook on life. Whether you’ve taken a long fitness hiatus or have never set foot inside a studio, you’ll be amazed at how quickly your body will thank you from your very first ILKB sweat session. Here are just some of the ways your body benefits from kickboxing, from day 1 to day 365.
After 1 class
You’re feeling energized, focused, and motivated.
Putting your body under physical stress (a.k.a. working out) prompts an immediate fight-or-flight response that produces instant benefits. Blood flow to your brain increases, immediately making you feel alert, aware and awake. Meanwhile, a surge of the hormone epinephrine makes you more motivated, blocks pain and makes you mentally sharper. And that sore feeling you get a day or two later? That’s your body going into repair mode, slowly but surely making you stronger. During your next kickboxing session, you’ll be able to work harder without being nearly as sore. Your body will also start to mobilize its fat stores, making you shed those extra pounds.
After 1 week
You’re making smarter food choices, feeling happier, and sleeping better.
After you’ve completed a few kickboxing classes, you’ll find that, when you make smart food choices, your workouts become easier. As a result, you’ll begin to crave junk food less and less to keep fueling your body with wholesome, nutritious foods. The feel-good hormones that peak during your workouts will stay with you through the day, easing your stress levels and giving you a more positive outlook on life. After sweating it out at the studio for an hour, you will sleep more soundly and awaken more rested.
After 3 months
Your clothes fit better, you’ve developed a consistent routine, and your endurance increases.
At the three-month mark, your strength and fitness will start to really improve, and you’ll start to see measurable changes as your body drops inches of fat and gains muscle tone. Making it to class a few times a week becomes less of a conscious effort as it becomes part of your regular routine – and one that you look forward to, at that! You’ll also notice day-to-day living becomes a little easier. You’ll be able to climb stairs better or play with the kids more easily. You’re also over the painful bit, and won’t be nearly as sore as you were in the beginning.
After 6 months
You’re dropping body fat and gaining muscle tone and flexibility, and people around you are taking notice.
After half a year working out, your muscles will be visibly more defined and you’ll have dropped a significant amount of body fat in conjunction with a healthy diet. While you have noticed your body subtly changing over the past few months, this is where the people around you really begin to take note of all of your hard work paying off! But it’s not just about looking great – you’ll feel great, too. Your muscles, in addition to being more defined, are also noticeably more efficient, meaning you’ll enjoy better endurance. Your heart has also physically increased in size, making it able to pump more blood with greater ease. After six months of kickboxing, your risk of having a heart attack decreases as your body begins to transform for the better.
After 1 year
You’re maintaining goals, pushing past old limits and increasing your muscle definition.
In one year, you will have completely transformed your body and mind through a regular kickboxing regimen coupled with a healthy diet. You’ll have crushed old goals, and will set new milestones for your progress. Your mental health will be stronger than ever – studies show that exercise is more effective than cognitive behavioral therapy in reducing anxiety and equal to (or better!) than medication for anxiety. But perhaps the best thing that will happen after maintaining exercise for a year is the fact it will have become a solid habit. By year one, you will be completely hooked on kickboxing and the many benefits it gives your body, mind and life.