Regardless of whether you’re on a tight schedule and squeezing in a quick workout or heading to the gym ready for a long sweat session, it’s important to make the most out of your workout. A person’s workout game plan is often only a few tweaks away from being much more effective. From fueling your body with the proper nutrients to wearing the proper workout attire, there are a ton of little switches you can make to enhance your workouts and reach your fitness goals. Before you head to the gym, be sure to check out these helpful tips below.
Warm-up and gradually buildup intensity
Before you begin your workout, it’s important to warm up. You don’t want to shock your body by jumping right into an intense workout. Begin by stretching or doing some light cardio to get your blood flowing and heart pumping. Not only will this enhance muscle performance during your workout, it will also reduce the likelihood of injury. Once you’re finished with your warm-up, you can start to gradually build up your workout as your body gets more comfortable. If you’re not sure where to start, check out this warm-up workout.
Pay attention to your form
Throughout your workout, be sure to pay attention to your form. While you may feel like getting in more reps will maximize your workout, it won’t be as effective if your form isn’t right. If you think increasing numbers will sacrifice good form, stick with your current weight and reps. It’s more important to maintain consistent form than to maintain consistent numbers, so don’t cut any corners. As you master perfect form with lighter weights, you can gradually start to build up to get the most out of your exercise.
Wear comfortable workout clothes
We all have those days where we don’t want to work out. It can be even more difficult to get into the gym mindset when we’re not wearing the proper attire. It’s important to wear clothes that you feel good in and can move around in comfortably throughout your workout, so you don’t get distracted fidgeting with your clothing. As you get ready, pick out clothes made from quality fabrics that are durable.
Big-name brands like Lululemon are great for the gym because their fabric is both comfortable and sweat-resistant, keeping you comfortable throughout your entire workout. However, these brands can be expensive. If you don't want to pay a fortune, you can easily find the same styles by shopping Lululemon secondhand at affordable prices. So go ahead and treat yourself to that second pair of leggings!
Switch things up
Don’t torture yourself with a workout that you never look forward to. If the exercise bike or the elliptical is your usual go-to but you cringe at the sight of it, switch things up!. Once you start to dread a particular exercise, it’ll turn into a chore before you know it. Be sure to choose a workout that both challenges and excites you to prevent yourself from burning out. Develop a schedule for each gym session that fits in a balance of both the workouts you love and the ones you find more challenging. A group fitness class could be just what you need – you’ll readily find friends and encouragement, plus a new challenge, in a group environment!
Fuel your body
Before sweating it out, be sure to eat something light and nutritious to boost your energy levels and stabilize your blood sugar. If you don’t eat before a workout, your blood sugar levels will drop, causing you to feel lightheaded and sluggish while exercising. Not only can this jeopardize your workout goals, it can also trigger wear and tear on your body. Make sure that you’re getting enough protein in your diet as well to maintain a strong system and rebuild muscle after a workout. Be sure to keep a protein-packed snack in your gym bag to boost your workout’s efficiency.