5 Mistakes to Avoid at the Gym
You train regularly? Bravo! You are already a step ahead from many people. However, if you are training, you might as well do it properly in order to help you reach your objectives, stay motivated, and keep living your active lifestyle. So here are a few of the mistakes to be avoided to optimize your chances of success!
1- Not enough intensity!
Because your time is precious, make sure you are using it efficiently during your workouts. Many people go to the gym by force of habit and “go through the motions on autopilot,” reading a book, watching TV shows, texting, or reading emails while working out. At once, I suggest you set your cellphone on airplane mode right when you step in the gym, and concentrate on the training you have to complete. This doesn’t mean you can’t have fun, but make sure that you have the required intensity to make it worth coming in the first place! Each well-invested effort brings your closer to your objectives, and thus, allows you to get better results! You will leave with a sense of accomplishment!
2- Not changing your workout routine
By repeating the same training program and the same exercises session after session, your body gets used to it: this is what we call the adaptation principle. This is great and means that your physical condition is improving, but it also means that to keep on getting good results you have to up the intensity, otherwise, you will reach a plateau! The best way to proceed is to change your program every 4 weeks or so. At the muscular level, you can change exercises, weights, number of sets and reps, and on the cardiovascular level, you can change the length of your sessions, the type of workout you perform, or the nature of the exercise. Invest also on cross-training by integrating a variety of workouts, such as TRX, Zumba, or Xperience 360 classes. You will stimulate your muscles differently, which will bring about different physiological adaptations, and therefore results!
3- Overestimating energy expenditure
We tend to overestimate the intensity, length, poundage, and even frequency of our workouts! To avoid this, and thus reduce the risk of being disappointed with the results you get, keep a training log that describes your sessions in details. Also, when training “hard” for 30 minutes, we may overestimate the amount of calories we burn! Although exercise burns calories, the best way to lose weight and maintain it is found in being more diligent and regular in your training sessions. By the way, this is the reason why we do not rely only on exercise to lose weight, but also on nutrition!
4- Performing the wrong workout
Is your current training program the fruit of your personal creation? Did you find it on the Web, or from an app? The exercises and workouts you perform have a direct influence on your results. One of the best ways of getting results quickly is to ask for help from a personal trainer/kinesiologist and ask for them to build you the perfect workout according to your personal objectives. Specific exercises will allow you to get the results you aim for, while doing random things will yield random results!
5- Mistaking mental fatigue with physical fatigue
After a hard day’s work, we do not necessarily feel like working out, and we go back home feeling exhausted. We feel tired, even though we spent most of the day sitting! Our brain may be saturated, but our body is ready to move and become active. So you have to give yourself a kick in the… From the first minutes of exercising, you will feel energy rising, as well as stress reducing along with the feeling of well-being that follows. So before you skip your next workout, try to be active for about 3 minutes, and reassess your energy levels. You will be surprised!
By Karine Larose