How to Get the Most Out of Your Workout
Whether you’re just getting started on your fitness journey or a dedicated gym rat, these tips will help you make each workout more effective, efficient and add challenging elements into your routine.
Fueling Your Body
Properly fueling your body is important for your performance in the gym. Avoid eating a large meal before working out and don’t go to the gym on an empty stomach. If you’re low on energy before a workout, eat a small, easily digestible whole-food snack for energy, such as an apple.
Strength training burns calories and breaks down your muscles. Eating within an hour after working out will help you burn more calories and repair the muscles you just worked out. A moderate portion of protein and healthy carbs will replenish your body’s glycogen.
Don’t forget to drink water before, during, and after your workout. Staying hydrated is critical to successful fueling and getting the most out of each workout.
Plan Every Workout
Having a plan helps you avoid wasting valuable time and keeps your heart rate up because you won’t be standing around, wondering what to do next. If you don’t have a workout memorized, write exercises on index cards or make notes in your phone.
Before you begin working out, determine what you’d like to achieve. Maybe it’s to get a good sweat in after a busy day or you’re working toward a specific goal. Whatever it is, go in with clear intensions.
Maximize your Time
Long rest periods can lead to boredom and a lower heart rate. Give yourself 30-60 seconds between exercises so you have enough time to catch your breath without sacrificing your elevated heart rate. If the space or equipment that you planned to use is occupied, do some quick cardio moves such as high-knees or quick feet while you wait. This keeps your heart rate up and ensures you’re maximizing your time.
Make It Short and Sweet
Most of us don’t have time to spend two hours at the gym. Luckily, we can get great results in a short amount of time by doing high-intensity intervals. They also burn fat faster than working out at a slower pace. Try doing supersets. They combine the benefit of cardio with your strength-training routine. Supersets are two types of moves, either working the same or opposite muscle groups. Do each set for your normal amount of reps and rest for a minute between each superset.
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