Working out is fun and has a bevy of benefits from better physical fitness to mental health. Still, if you are also tracking your progress, you may notice some stagnation periods (maybe you are going through one right now).
When this happens, you have to take a closer look at your pre-workout habits.
These are the ones that will help you reach new highs and surpass limits. Today we’ll have a look at the most common, and often ignored, pre-workout habits you can adopt to get the most out of your workout routine.
#1: Pay Attention To Your Nutrition
Have you ever tried to work out on an empty stomach? You probably have (most of us made that mistake at least once). The sluggishness, the dread before a new set, and the overall feeling that the world is about to end can easily be avoided if you pay attention to your pre-workout nutritional intake.
Good pre-workout nutrition is a crucial element for your performance at the gym. Focus on getting a healthy size of carbs, protein, and fats 2-3 hours before you exercise. However, if this doesn’t fit in your schedule, you can still eat a few healthy snacks. However, the closer you get to the time to exercise, the simpler and smaller the snacks should be.
#2: Try Some Pre-Workout Supplements
You need energy and concentration power to get the best out of your workouts. Still, this is easier said than done. We all have those moments when you don’t feel like even going to the gym much less get into the mood for lifting or cardio!
In these situations, you may want to consider some supplements such as pre-workout powder. These types of products boost your energy levels and help optimize your effort throughout the exercise. You may even start to do extra reps and sets, which in the end will show incredible results.
However, just because you take supplements, it doesn’t mean you can skip pre-workout meals or cut down your overall nutritional intake!
You may say that’s a given, but people still go into their exercise routine without a proper warm-up! Even if you’re just doing a few quick exercises, the warm-up is important because it prepares your muscles for more intensive activity.
It’s also a method to reduce the risk of injury since it raises the body temperature and gets the heart pumping slightly faster.
Plus, a good warm-up routine increases the range of motion so you can focus on activating a wider range of muscles during the exercises.
#4: Check Your Sleep Schedule
Sleep is another crucial factor that influences your performance in the gym. If you are sleep-deprived or you’ve been having trouble sleeping, you probably feel sluggish when working out and nothing seems to move forward.
That’s because it really doesn’t. High-quality sleep helps regulate a wide range of processes in the body and plays an important role in the release and balance of neurotransmitters that keep us happy and motivated (dopamine and serotonin).
If you don’t sleep well enough, the brain can’t do its repair and refresh job during the night which will have an impact during the day.
If you feel your snooze time is lacking in quality, here are a few tips to help you sleep better. It may be difficult at times, but sleep must come before entertainment and even socializing (parties and meeting with friends up late).
Your pre-workout habits define your mood and overall performance in the gym. The cool part is that your body will tell you what’s missing – good nutrition vs high-quality sleep. So, take a step backward, stop the daily race, and ask yourself “What do I need to feel and do better when working out?”.