With the right combination of strength and mental acuity, the body can do incredible things. When the body has to undergo a strenuous activity, such as rigorous training, it’ll serve your cardiovascular system to get the preparation it needs.
A workout can only do good if your body is also taking the right fuel to improve stamina and endurance. So, before you decide to continue training, your body must first receive proper conditioning. Fortunately, this can be easily done through the following:
Eat The Best Pre-Workout Foods
If you want to last a workout, it’s essential to know which type of foods will help fuel your body for optimal gym results. You need to eat right not just to fight off hunger, but to arm yourself against fatigue and help with recovery between sets and until the next training.
To increase the effectiveness of your workout, here are some foods that you can try:
- Whole Grain Bread – these are excellent sources of carbs that you can incorporate with eggs or meat, such as chicken or low-fat turkey, for protein. This type of bread may contain whole grain or rolled oats, brown rice, and whole barley.
- Bananas – another healthy source of carbohydrates, potassium, which is beneficial for your nerves, and may help prevent muscle cramps. They’re also referred to as ‘nature’s power bar’ because you can have a piece 5 to 10 minutes before your workout. Lastly, bananas will fill you up without weighing you down.
- Trail Mix – if you want to pack on muscle mass, trail mixes provide calories and protein even in small quantities. However, if you’re going to lose weight, it’s crucial to stay away from pre-packaged varieties, especially those that contain sugar or chocolate.
- Oats – these are the classic combination of fiber and carbohydrates. The latter is released into the body slowly, making it one of the best foods for retaining energy for lasting endurance.
Take The Right Supplements
When it comes to supplementation, you can’t just pick anything right off the shelves without knowing which one is the best for you. Taking pre-workout supplements gives you an energy boost and some are specific to the type of workout you do.
Ideally, supplements should contain the following: creatine, caffeine, branded-chain amino acids (BCAAs), citrulline, beta-alanine, sodium bicarbonate, and nitrate. Some of these ingredients improve your endurance and others also provide the needed strength.
You also don’t want supplements with artificial sweeteners, flavoring, colors, preservatives, and fillers that can potentially harm your body.
Ensure You Have Enough Hydration
One of the best times to drink water is before and after a workout. Exercising makes you sweat, and with sweat comes the loss of electrolytes. Water regulates the body’s temperature and lubricates the joints, helping you avoid injuries. While there’s no rule on how much water you should take while exercising, the American Council on Exercise suggests that you can take 8 ounces of water up to 30 minutes before warming up.
Depending on the intensity of your workout, sports drinks may also help. The sports drink that you drink may also contain calories and potassium to enable the body to recover faster.
However, choose sports drinks that don’t have added sugar. Also, steer clear from a sports drink with caffeine, especially if you’re already a heavy coffee drinker as you may urinate more frequently.
Get Good Quality Sleep
What many people don’t realize is that they don’t build muscles in the gym. Lifting heavy weights is what tears the muscle fibers, and the body repairs them while you’re asleep. That being said, athletes must at least get 7 hours of sleep. This gives you enough time to build back muscles, improve hormonal imbalance, and dramatically help your mental health.
If you’re having trouble sleeping at night, you can create a personal bedtime ritual to wind down, such as reading a book, avoid getting in bed with an empty or full stomach and sticking to a consistent bedtime schedule.
Wear The Right Clothing
You can’t be at best if you’re wearing something inappropriate while exercising. Your choices shouldn’t also stop you from creating the right form. Your workout clothes should be comfortable and something that won’t hinder your movement.
The fabric should be light and lets your skin breathe, such as cotton. You can also choose other types of fabric that offer moisture-wicking that doesn’t soak.
Additionally, one of the best fitness hacks you should know is to wear highly functional insulated activewear, especially when you want to work out in the cold. These include puffer vests and fleece pants. Put on moisture-wicking clothing for the inner layer and follow up with an insulating layer. If it’s raining, wear an outer layer, such as a waterproof anorak, to protect your skin.
Do Warmup Exercises
Not all warmup exercises are the same and not appropriate for every single type of workout. If you want more muscle and fewer injuries in the gym, choose routines that’ll improve movement and prepare your nervous system.
Do you think warmups are only for intense workouts? Even yoga teachers recommend warmup exercises before doing yoga poses. Warmup movements prepare the joints and increase blood flow. Also, warmups allow you to connect with your body and breath.
Get your lifting muscles ready by doing arm circles. Mobilize stiff joints by performing light leg swings. Excite the nervous system by doing jumps and bounds. Dynamic mobility is better than stretching since it relaxes the muscles, and it may not work with your performance at the gym.
With any workout, getting the best results also includes the effort you put in during your preparation. Even machines require calibration before usage. What more for the body?
Regardless of the exercise you do, it’s crucial to prepare so that you can perform at your best and last longer throughout the routine you’re following. Preparing your body also takes the willingness to do better in what you need to do. It then comes back with the results that you want. Hence, before your workout routine, don’t forget to consider the tips mentioned above.