If you’re hitting the gym regularly but not seeing or feeling results, you might not be working out efficiently. However contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to train harder or for longer, just smarter. Here are 5 ways to get the most out of your gym session.
- Have a plan
In the same way you write a list before you head into the supermarket to stop yourself from aimlessly wandering the aisles for 20-minutes, heading to the gym without a plan of attack is not an efficient use of time. Determine what you’re going to train before you arrive – whether it’s legs, upper body or a group fitness class – so you can get started straight away and elevate your heart rate.
- Listen to music
Music has been proven to reduce perceived exertion rates, so if you pair your next workout with a heart pumping playlist – you’ll likely find you can go harder, faster and for longer without even realising it. Having troubles smashing a PB? Try incorporating a playlist full of songs with complementary beats per minute (BPM).There are plenty of great BPM specific playlists available on Spotify.
- Track your progress
Tracking your progress during each workout with a fitness tracker like a Myzone Heart Rate Monitor or Apple Watch will help you keep tabs on your progress and performance so you can aim for a new PB every time you hit the gym. Challenge yourself week on week by trying to get your heart rate a little higher, running that little bit further or hitting a higher calorie burn target.
- Stay hydrated
If you want to achieve peak performance during a workout, you need to ensure you’re staying hydrated, which means replacing the fluid you’re losing through sweat. Dehydration can lead to all sorts of problems including muscle cramps during exercise. In addition to the recommended 2L per day, as a general rule of thym aim for an additional 600ml for every half hour of exercise.
- Incorporate some HIIT
High Intensity Interval Training is a quick and effective to get results. Not only will it torch some serious calories in a shorter period of time, but it will also reduce body fat and improve cardiovascular fitness making it the perfect 3-in-1 workout! Aim to complete as many reps as you can in 20 seconds followed by a 10 second rest period.