Finding time for fitness can be tough, especially if you’re a parent. It’s therefore vital to get the most out of every workout or fitness session. Here are some tips to help maximize your workout:
Before your workout
Before you work out, you should take a few moments to determine whether you’re actually safe to work out. If you’re already tired, ill, or injured, then it may be best to accept reality and leave working out for another day. If you’re overfull, hungry, or thirsty, then you should probably reschedule for later. If you can’t, again, wait for another day.
It’s also important that you start your workout well-hydrated and with the right level of fuel in your body. If you try working out after a heavy meal, your body will probably be too busy digesting to work out effectively. On the other hand, if you don’t have enough fuel in your body, then you’ll be too weak to work out effectively. Either way, you may find it difficult to focus.
It’s easy to recognize when you’re actively hungry. It can be a lot harder to recognize when your energy levels are just a bit on the low side. That’s one of the reasons it can be handy to get into the habit of taking pre workout supplements. They’re a convenient way of topping up your energy levels quickly and effectively. Try to find the supplements that work best for you.
During your workout
Start your workout the right way by warming up properly. Stick to fairly slow, rhythmic movements like jogging on the spot. These will get heat into your muscles with minimal risk of injury. Avoid very bouncy movements and be careful with stretches. If you really want to include stretches, leave them to the very end of your warm-up session.
Have a plan of action for loading your body safely but not excessively. Light cardio is a great warmup for strength training and light strength training can be a great way to end a cardio session. You can safely combine both cardio and weight training with flexibility training. In fact, this can be an effective combination as your muscles should already be nicely warm and offer maximum flexibility.
Remember to keep hydrated. Depending on the length and nature of your workout, you may also need to look at electrolyte supplements and even snacks.
After your workout
It’s generally a good idea to refuel again after your workout. Focus on protein. This promotes muscle repair and fills you up. You might also want to add some complex carbohydrates. These deliver slow-release energy. You might find fiber a bit heavy and you generally want to go easy on fat (and sugar and salt).
Be careful with caffeine and alcohol. Remember that exercise speeds up your metabolism. That means anything you eat or drink will be transported around your body more quickly than usual. This means that even mildly caffeinated or alcoholic drinks can leave you absolutely buzzing.
What tips would you add?