4 Tips to a Better Workout
You’ve carved out a few hours in your already busy schedule for physical training. You are trying to accomplish a lot in these few hours, so they should be taken seriously.
Structured, planned, purposeful training is what will keep your mind sharp and your body strong. Rather than going through your workout on autopilot, use our workout checklist to make sure that you’ve done all you can to maximize your workouts!
When was the last time you ate?
Training sessions should be challenging and get you a little out of your comfort zone. This is where change happens. The last thing we want is a feeling of dizziness or to be lightheaded due to lack of energy (food). When we only get a few times a week to do physical work, we want it to count.
We recommend eating 1-2 hours before a training session. This provides fuel for your workout, so we can keep the intensity at the appropriate level. This window also allows the food to digest, so it doesn’t feel like it might come back up.
Now, if you train before work(6am or earlier), waking up at 3 am to make eggs or a bowl of oatmeal isn’t going to happen. You can try powering through on an empty stomach, but we usually recommend drinking a glass of water and eating something light – ½ banana or a handful of blueberries.
How much water have I had today?
You sucked down that bottle of wine last night and here you are at your 6 am workout with your mouth so dry you’re asking yourself, “Did I chew on a sweater last night?”
Water affects performance, recovery and injury prevention.
Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your training session.
How did you sleep last night?
Sleep provides energy to both the brain and body and is key for proper workout recovery. Lack of good quality sleep increases your chances of fatigue and poor focus. Both of which are crucial to your training sessions!
Take the quality of your sleep into consideration when training.
Your workout plan doesn’t have to be set in stone. If you had an intense strength training day on the calendar, but you were up all night with a sick child, it may be wise to lighten the loads on days like this and just focus on getting in quality movement.
Did I warm up?
A good warm up is the bridge between inactivity and training. Skipping a warm up is a huge mistake, but so is doing the wrong kind of warm up.
Walk into any commercial gym and watch the sequence of events that take place. People will check-in at the front desk, hang up their keys, and do 10 minutes of cardio on a treadmill. They’ll follow that up with 5 minutes of static stretches and foam rolling…
So what’s the problem? They just wasted 1/4 of their training time warming up for jogging.
A good warm up helps your body transition from one activity (be it sleep, work, or whatever else it is) to your workout. If you’ve been lying in bed or sitting behind a desk for the last 8 hours, your joints, muscles, nervous system, and mindset won’t be ready for intense physical activity.
Food, water, sleep…pay attention to these three things and get the most out of your training sessions.