agility

3 ways you are ruining your workout

As a fitness trainer, I can only shake my head and be dumbfounded about why people sabatoge the time and effort they put into their workouts. Here are 3 ways you are ruining your workout.

#1: Nutrition is the # 1-way people ruin the potential gains from their workout. The assumption of calories in = calories out has long been debunked. Just because you burned 250 calories in your spin class today, doesn't mean that 200 calorie donut just magically disappears in your body. The body is not that simple. It does not operate like a bank account.  The body responds differently depending on the macros you consume. Using the donut as an example, a food high in carbs and sugar releases a torrent of insulin in your bloodstream to manage the spike in blood sugar. Since your body already most likely had a sufficient amount of glycogen stored for energy in your liver, those donut carbs are gathered up and stored as fat. The body is very efficient at saving up plenty of energy and rarely needs that afternoon sugar fix you think you crave because you burned too many calories with your workout. 

#2:  Another way a person ruins their workout is lack of diversity. I have worked in several gyms as a fitness trainer. Every gym looks the same. You have the same people, using the same equipment, doing the same exercises, at the same rate and the same amount of reps. Nothing ever changes. The body adapts very quickly when we workout. Most people look at workouts as just checking the "I worked out today" box. They don't ever challenge themselves, push themselves or work different muscle groups in different ways. I am a big fan of non-traditional workout mixed with traditional. This keeps the body guessing, works different muscle groups and touches upon all the areas essential to total fitness: strength, cardio, flexibility, speed, agility, balance, body composition, endurance, coordination, reaction time and power.  I personally do traditional weight lifting maybe one to two times a week. The rest of the week is a mix of non-traditional with functional fitness exercises. Yoga, TRX, climbing, kyaking, HIIT, tractor tire workouts, swinging hammers, throwing medicine balls, agility ladders, bungee cord resistance work, etc. 

#3:  Lastly, the way many people ruin their workouts is by treating their gym time like a social hour or "catch up on my Netflix" time. Distracted working out is not beneficial. I don't know how many times I have watched people stand and chat, and chat, and chat. 30 minutes go by and not one movement has been made! Or the person so engrossed in their tv show that they are just moseying along on their cardio equipment, not even out of breath. Going one slow pace and not pushing yourself to get close to target heart rate is doing you no favors. 

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