Fitness results are the exciting part of your workout. The definition in your body tells you whether that workout is really working, but it can be tough to get the results you want for many reasons. Maybe you’re not eating right, or you’re plateauing.
If you’re not getting the results you want in VR, don’t cave into the feeling of hopelessness. The same feelings that motivated you to take those first virtual steps are even more important now that you’re facing a lack of motivation.
We may not have every solution for every scenario, but these are the common frustrations that lead us off the path to fitness.
Why Haven’t I Lost Weight?
This basic question is a great first “check” on your behavior inside and outside of VR.
You’re not Eating Right
Exercising increases your appetite as your body burns calories to gain energy. The calories you choose as replacements, however, should be full of the right nutrients your body needs to get fit. You need energy boosting vitamins and minerals, enough protein, and the right mixture of carbs and veggies to give you energy and extra boosts.
Simple changes to your diet, along with documenting your cheat days and counting calories, are important steps. Be sure you reach for water first when you’re thirsty. Naturally quenching your thirst with water is an easy way to eliminate sugary drinks from your diet.
You’re Not Playing Consistently
Commitment is an important topic, since goals don’t meet themselves. Consider what’s stopping you from getting back in the groove. Are you finding it hard to come up with the time for VR? Schedule it. Are you bored with your games? Invest in something new. There’s a solution here, but you have to invest in yourself to find it.
You Aren’t Using Downtime Effectively
Downtime is about letting the muscles rebuild, but a few days away from a workout and motivation starts to slip. I like to keep motivation high a few different ways:
- Personal Challenges: I try brainstorm difficult or stylish sequences I can pull off in game
- Sale Hunting: I like to look for new games and develop an idea of what I want to play
- Physical Hobby: Mine is hiking. What gets you out of the house? Where do you want to go?
If you keep these ideas firmly in your mind, you’ll be thinking about your next play session and building your motivation!
Why am I not building muscle?
VR fitness can absolutely build muscle and show results. I’ve done it a few times (rubber banding in and out of shape), toning up rather quickly.
If you’re not gaining strength, it could be related to one of these reasons.
You’re Not Focusing On The Right Muscle Groups
Want to strengthen your arms and shoulders? Get into boxing titles. Want to supercharge your core? Try games that force you to squat, like Hot Squat or Holopoint. You can also add squats to almost any shooter title with waist-high cover, like Superhot or Pavlov VR.
Your Downtime is too Frequent or Too Long
Ideally, your downtime should be no more than a day or two so you don’t lose the gains you’ve made. But let’s take a step back think about your routine outside VR. Are you at a desk all day? If you’re sitting for long hours, you need to find reasons to get up and walk. Even if you spend 10-15 minutes a day just walking around your office or in your neighborhood, you’re offsetting some of the effects of being seated all day.
You’re also maintaining some level of light activity, utilizing your downtime more effectively and staying in fighting shape.
Why am I Plateauing?
The dreaded plateau: that point in your workout where it feels like results stop and you get bored with the routine. Let’s overcome it together!
You Aren’t Diversifying Your Experience
We review a new title just about every week, including fitness breakdowns, for an idea of what’s great in the world of VR. If you’re finding yourself stuck in the same genre, or in the same game, I suggest you check our game reviews and find something new.
VR is full of diverse experiences that even non-gamers can appreciate. Collect more full body experiences, and arrange your playspace to fully enjoy them.
Your Intensity Is Too Low
If you have a fitness tracker, examine your heartrate for a session in VR. Are the games you play pushing you to a level intense enough to see results? VR is an excellent tool to gamify fitness, but if I’m honest BoxVR doesn’t excite me personally very much. Instead, I got into the rhythm genre so I could up my intensity and play something I found fun.
Sometimes you need to balance your enjoyment with the tools you need to get fit. Before I found my current routine, I was using BoxVR for 20-30 minutes for a higher intensity workout before I played a game I enjoyed, like Arizona Sunshine.
You Haven’t Made Lifestyle Changes
Fitness is a lifestyle. You need to think about what you eat, how you sleep, and how you get through your day. Go beyond writing down your cheat meals and focus on upping your healthy food intake and being happier.
How Can I Improve My Results Overall?
Every individual is different, but I find that a reality check and some quick questions help me figure out why I’ve stopped getting the results I want. Most of the time, I have to re-commit to my pursuits and redefine my goals to get the most out of VR.
Accountability is also a major reason why you should keep a fitness journal. When you need to write down your cheat meals, or log your fast food trips, your own bad habits become clearer to you. Once you overcome yourself, you’re ready for the results you desire.