4 Small Changes That Can Have a Huge Impact on Your Workouts
Regular exercise is a vital part of a healthy life. Studies have shown that it has a positive impact on your physical health as well as your mental health. It reduces your risk of health issues such as heart disease, diabetes, depression, and more.
Everyone has different reasons for working out. You might be trying to lose weight, maintain your weight, build muscle, or increase your strength. There are also numerous ways to exercise, including lifting weights, running, hiking, swimming, yoga, and Zumba.
If you’ve been working out for a while and you’re not seeing the desired results, you may get discouraged. Sometimes, however, the answer is as simple as a small change. Here are four small changes that can have a significant impact on your workouts.
Watch Your Form
Whether you’re pumping iron, taking a jog, or even doing something low-impact like yoga, your form matters. The incorrect form may keep you from activating the right muscles. So, if you’re curling a dumbbell improperly, you might not see the muscle growth you’re hoping to achieve.
Poor form can also significantly increase your risk of injury. Misalignment can put stress on your joints, tendons, or muscles, which can then lead to strain or tears. Not only will the injuries hurt, but they’ll also mean that you have to sit out longer between sessions, which means it will take you longer to reach your goals.
Instead, pay close attention to your form. If you have to, speak with a personal trainer or your class instructor. You can also consult exercise videos online that address proper form. Just tweaking how you stand, bend, or lift can make a huge difference.
Pay Attention to What You Eat
Paying attention to what you eat doesn’t necessarily mean you need to go on a strict diet. You should, however, be conscious of the foods you put in your body. Some foods, like dairy, sugar, saturated fats, and alcohol can increase inflammation, which can negatively impact your workouts. Avoiding these types of foods, particularly before a workout, can be beneficial.
Eat a well-balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. You can also incorporate supplements into your diet as well, such as Thrive Experience. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water, too.
Stretch After Exercising
You probably do it all the time without thinking. You hit the gym, trails, or treadmill, and crank out your workout. Then, you go right back to your normal routine. You’re missing a key component of working out that many people overlook: stretching.
No matter what kind of exercise you prefer, you need to stretch afterwards. As you exercise, your body produces lactic acid, which accumulates in the muscles. A buildup can leave your muscles feeling tired and sore. Stretching helps to eliminate the acid, thus helping to prevent pain. Stretching also helps to improve flexibility and range of motion while reducing your risk for injury and shortening your recovery times.
Set a Bedtime Routine
Sleep is essential for improving your workouts and seeing results. When you sleep, your body restores itself. If you’re consistently going to bed late, not getting enough sleep, or sleeping poorly, your body won’t be able to recover and heal properly. You’re left feeling drained and weak, which means you won’t be able to lift as heavy, run as far, or keep up with your fitness instructors.
Set a bedtime routine for yourself. Pick a bedtime and stick to it. Before you go to bed, do things that help you unwind, whether that’s taking a warm bath, reading a book, meditating, or a combination of strategies. A consistent routine eventually triggers your body to realize it’s time to sleep, which can make it easier for you to fall asleep.
Don’t get discouraged if you’re not seeing the results you want from your workouts. Sometimes, all it takes is a small change or two.