For some people, there’s nothing like spending a good hour or two at the gym. But the time that you spend at the gym could end up being time spent in vain unless you adopt quality pre and post-workout practices.
To put this in perspective, if you’re an avid smoker or drinker and you go to the gym daily, you’ll definitely see results. But your overall health and strength will be subpar compared with those who live healthier lifestyles.
Essentially, if you want your workouts to matter, you have to develop practices before a workout and after that will enhance your time spent in the gym. And these practices are simpler than you think.
Everything from what you eat to your evening routine will play a role in your workout efforts. So if you want to step your gym game up, the following post will explore a few ways your pre and post-workout routines can help.
Many people wake up and go right to the gym without so much as rubbing their eyes before they put on their gym clothes. And though this takes dedication, you’re really doing more harm than good by skipping a preparatory routine.
You need to eat before a workout, especially if early in the morning is when you normally exercise.
Diet is critical for building muscle and maintaining strength. But if you workout without eating at the beginning of the day, this can have your body pulling calories from stored fat and muscle. And this can cause the body to retain and store more fat to meet the demand.
Additionally, many exercise enthusiasts like to freshen up before a workout, and this can include the use of talcum powder to reduce sweating in certain areas. But caution should be exercised here as many women have developed ovarian cancer due to using talcum powder over time and are seeking compensation for damages.
If you want to maintain health, avoid using perfumes and cosmetics before a workout, and always consume a balance of carbs and protein in the morning.
We’ve already mentioned that eating before a workout is the best practice. But how long before, and what types of foods should you be eating throughout the day that will add more benefits to your workout regimen?
Well, the answer depends on the goals that you wish to achieve.
For example, if you’re trying to bulk up and gain muscle mass, you’re in for a complex lifestyle that involves meal-prepping and consuming at least 9 grams of protein every 4 hours. And this is a practice that most body-builders take on.
But if you’re just interested in staying toned and in shape, you’ll be able to eat at normal intervals. Ideally, you want to eat at least a half-hour before a workout. However, eating the right foods is what counts.
If you’re interested in staying in shape, eating foods low in carbs and high in protein will optimize for muscle growth and fat reduction. In addition, eating nutrient-rich foods such as egg whites and a healthy diet of vegetables while avoiding fried foods and snacks will make you feel much better both before and during a workout.
After a workout, we’ll begin to notice that the endorphin rush begins to fade throughout the day, and you may find yourself naturally tired at night. And this is the state that you want to achieve.
Rest and recuperation are essential to a post-workout routine. In fact, stretching after a workout or before bed is recommended by many sports medicine specialists. This will keep your muscles toned and limber. And it will reduce the risk for injury during a workout.
Other self-care practices can also be implemented such as taking a hot bath or shower to relieve tension in the body after a workout.
Living a healthy lifestyle includes much more than curling a few dumbbells at the gym. If you want to really make your workouts matter, developing good habits before and after a workout are just as essential as waking up in the morning and driving to the gym.