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Are You Guilty of Committing These Common Workout Mistakes?

Thu., Aug. 18, 2011 8:58 AM EDT
by McKenzie Harris

Follow the tips below to avoid overworking your muscles or experiencing the dreaded workout plateau. After all, fitness is about developing a lifestyle. –mckenzie harris

If You’re Going To Do It, Do It Right

The only way to get optimal results is if you’re performing the exercises correctly. Bad form, lifting the inappropriate weight size and moving too fast can all result in injuries. So remember to slow down your reps and let go of those handles on the treadmill or elliptical machines … it decreases your cardio burn and has a negative impact on your posture.

Mix It Up

Your body can adapt extremely quickly to your workouts, which is why it’s important to keep changing what you do and how you do it. You can do this by trying new classes and techniques, listening to new music to get your heart pumping and surprising your body with different moves in each workout session to avoid plateaus and boredom.

Stay Focused

You aren’t working out hard enough if you are able to read, talk on your cellphone or watch TV. Create a playlist on your iPod with music that will motivate you more and make you work harder.

Always Warm Up

Just like you prepare yourself mentally for a workout, your body needs preparation, too. Warming up prepares the body for exercise by slowly and gradually elevating muscle temperature. Remember to always stretch after your workout to improve flexibility when your muscles are warm. Stretching “cold” muscles can result in muscle injury and decreases the efficacy of your workouts.

You Are What You Eat

You’ve probably heard this phrase a thousand times … and it’s true. Exercise goes hand-in-hand with making healthy eating choices. You will not be able to optimize the results you get at the gym if you have terrible eating habits. A good place to start is to eliminate processed foods, sugar, soda and caffeine from your diet. It takes a 3,500 calorie deficit to lose one single pound.

Take a Break

There is such a thing as too much exercising. Your body needs downtime to replenish energy and allow muscles to recover. For every two to three days you work out, take one day off.

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