Saturday, 11 January 2014

Do you feel you're wasting your time at the gym?

If there is one piece of advice I wish everyone would listen to it's:

train like you mean it!

But what does that really mean?

It means:

  • don't be like those people who coast through their workout without breaking a sweat (Apologies if you're one of these women, but my heart sinks when I induct someone and they're wearing full makeup. If I trained in makeup it would be all down my face in about 10 minutes!)
  • don't stick to your favourite machine, on your favourite level, and definitely don't read your favourite book!
  • don't spend the hour in deep conversation with your friend, or use the time to phone your mum
  • don't grab the first (pink) weight you see, do some half-hearted bicep curls, and think you've completed your strength training for the session.

[source] Some of these guys are working harder than others!

Train like you mean it

  • have a programme to follow - either designed for you by an instructor, or one that you find online/in a magazine (and I'm always happy to help out, too) - and stick to it
  • put your full effort into each workout - if you can say more than a single sentence when you're on a cardio machine without pausing to catch your breath, you could probably put the level up
  • listen to music to keep your speed up, rather than watching TV - it's easy to get sidetracked by your favourite show, and end up watching instead of working (I've seen people stop cycling entirely so they don't miss that really important scene in Hollyoaks!)
  • when you strength train:
    • choose a weight that's heavy enough - usually one that will fatigue your muscles at somewhere between 8 - 15 reps (depending on your goals and programme)
    • watch that your rest times don't last too long - 30-60 seconds is long enough for most general training
    • make sure your form is perfect - get an instructor to check, if you're unsure - make every rep count

Happy training!

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