When you are setting aside part of the day to prioritize your health at the gym, it makes sense to maximize your results by following workout routines. Not only do you need to know what exercises to follow throughout the week, but there are certain things you can do with pre- and post-workout routines.
Often, it’s easy to overlook these routines because you are distracted by other activities that are going on in your day. For example, your cycling class finishes, and you jump off the bike to hurry home so you can pick up your child from school.
But keep in mind that fitness doesn’t start and end when you touch the exercise equipment. Instead, you can be more proactive about your workout routines by implementing habits before and after your exercise session.
Tips for Pre-Workout Routines
Here are a few things you should always do before starting your workout:
1. Sleep: Follow a consistent sleep schedule so you have the energy and stamina needed to stick to your exercise routines. If you stay up late one night, then it might be tough to get out of bed for your morning workout. Plus, being well-rested has a positive impact on balancing your hormones, improving overall health, and reducing the cravings that lead to overeating.
2. Hydrate: Not only do you need a water bottle during your workout session, but be proactive about hydrating before you step foot in the gym. Hydrating before a workout can contribute to the high energy levels you need for your exercise session – and the rest of your day.
3. Supplements: Certain pre-workout supplements can be taken 30 minutes before your workout begins. Adding supplements to your pre-workout routines helps you supply your muscles with the resources you need for optimal energy during the session. Pre-workout supplements often include BCAAs, B vitamins, taurine, and NO2-boosters.
4. Clothing: Invest in the proper clothing, shoes, and equipment that is needed for your sport of choice. For example, a supportive sports bra is essential for runners, while protective gear is necessary for impact sports like football. Plus, a good workout outfit can go a long way to help you feel confident at the gym. Make sure your clothes are comfortable, and always invest in good shoes to protect your feet and joints.
5. Warm Up: Design pre-workout routines to help your muscles warm up before you get into the most intense parts of your workout. This warm-up increases body temperatures, supports range of motion, and prepares the joints and muscles for the activities you are about to do. A good warm-up is critical to decreasing the risk of injury.
6. Scheduling: Set yourself up for a successful workout routine by making sure that you always follow through on your personal commitment to exercise. One tip is to write your workout on the calendar so you don’t let other conflicting activities get in the way.
Tips for Post-Workout Routines
Make sure you are getting the best results possible by setting a little time aside for these post-workout routines:
1. Hydrate: Sweating means that your body is losing water, so you need to be proactive about replacing the water immediately after the workout. Have a cool glass of water available so you can drink it down when your exercise session is over. Or, consider drinking coconut water or a low-calorie sports drink to replace electrolytes after an intense session.
2. Cool Down: Don’t stop your exercising too suddenly. Instead, decrease your intensity, so the body has time to come back to normal. For example, after running, use the treadmill’s “cool down” setting to slow down from running to jogging to walking.
3. Stretch: Since your muscles are warm after a workout, it’s the perfect time to stretch so you can maintain flexibility and mobility. Stretching as part of your post-workout routines can speed up your recovery and reduce muscle soreness. Plus, you have the added benefit of improved range of motion – which might reduce injuries in the future.
4. Shower and Change: When you have a busy day, it’s easy to move on to your next activity without taking the time to change out of your exercise clothing. But it’s essential to rinse off in the shower and change into clean, dry clothes so you can avoid breakouts and skin infections.
5. Refuel: You’ve burned a lot of calories, so it makes sense that you might be hungry. Have healthy snacks on hand, so you aren’t tempted to stop at a drive-thru on your way home from the gym. A protein bar, smoothing, fresh fruit, or a handful of mixed nuts can be perfect to curb the hunger until your next meal. Snacks are essential for keeping you fueled.
6. Supplements: Part of your post-workout routines might include supplements to supercharge your nutrition. An easy supplement is to use protein powder in a blender bottle. You can quickly drink the protein and avoid unplanned snacking after the exercise session.
7. Tracking: Take a moment to write down your workout, including the date, activity, session length, number of reps, etc. Writing down the details is a great way to keep yourself accountable for your consistent workout routines. If you want to add another source of accountability, then create a digital tracker that you are sharing with a friend or family member.
A Quality Fitness Center You Will Love
Having a good gym makes all the difference in the quality of your workouts. Not only do you need access to top-notch equipment, but it can also be helpful to have fitness classes and personal training available. Add in these pre- and post-workout routines, and you will be set up for success in your health and fitness journey.
If you need help maintaining consistency with your fitness journey, join Fitness Nation today. Our local gym is more than a place where you work out. We are striving to create a community of like-minded people. Visit us to learn more about available gym memberships and services.