A workout is only effective if you truly push yourself. So many people claim to be working hard, but aren’t even breaking a sweat. That’s fine if you’re just exercising purely for the fun of it, but if you expect results, you have to put in the work. Here are some tips that you can remember next time to make the most out of your workout:
1. Zone in on the muscle you are working
If you’re working out your legs, there’s no reason for you to be thinking of your shoulders. Concentrating on the muscle/s being worked will help establish the mind-muscle connection. The stronger the connection, the better the isolation of the muscle. Being able to isolate the muscle effectively and loading it with resistance is what produces results because you are concentrating all your efforts on one area, as opposed to just a general area.
2. Fuel up before your workout
Consuming adequate amounts of lean proteins and complex carbohydrates will ensure that you have enough energy to power through your workout. Some believe that working out fasted will produce better fat loss results, but this is a myth. Fasted workouts will only increase your risk of muscle loss because of insufficient amounts of fuel in the stomach and bloodstream. An hour or two prior to your workout, make sure you consume good quality whole foods for better performance and endurance.
3. Drink black coffee before your workout
The caffeine in black coffee has a thermogenic effect. A study conducted at the Kyoto University found that those who consumed caffeine prior to exercising burned more fat during exercise than those who simply took the placebo pill. If a cup of coffee isn’t appealing, you could also drink a caffeine pill instead with the same results.
4. Keep yourself accountable
Social media websites like Facebook and Instagram are great for keeping yourself accountable. Posting before and after transformations, photos of your meals and even of yourself after a workout are just some examples. If you aren’t comfortable sharing those things to your followers, you could just store the photos on your phone and compare your results side by side after a certain period of time. Give yourself a timeline—in 2 months I want to lose 2 lbs. In 3 months I want to lose 2 more lbs. Make goals and smash them!
5. Don’t do the same thing twice in a row
This is an excellent way to keep your workouts fresh and exciting. The body is also likely to adapt if you repeat the same workouts exactly over and over again, which is why you need to change up your routine to continue making gains. A completely new program is not necessary, but smaller modifications like more repetitions on this day or more weight on that day, are more than enough to keep the body guessing.