Workout do’s and don’ts
Working out can get your desired results, only when you are well informed about the dos and don'ts. The key is to hustle wiser, not harder. Workout practices are varied but here is a list we came up with — for any workout — to help make every drop of sweat worth it.
Food for fuel: You will be amazed by the wonders of eating right prior to your workout session. Although fasting is known as the quickest weight loss method, it is not recommended to work out on an empty stomach. Researchers at the University of Bath, found out that men who had a meal before their workout session burned more carbs in general and also had a boosted metabolism rate.
This does not mean that you can overeat either. A light snack consisting of a mix of carbs and proteins is suggested about two hours before you start working out.
Hydration for regulation: Hydrating yourself 30 minutes ahead of your workout session is essential as water regulates your body temperature and the fluids in your joints. However, overhydrating will make you feel bloated, thereby weighing you down. Hence, the effective way is to hydrate in small amounts and avoid hydrating too soon pre-workout.
Stress less: Enter your workouts with a clear mind. Stress will only divert your focus and obstruct you from maximizing your gains.
Easy on the stimulants: Stimulants like caffeine can energise you and improve your performance but if not consumed in moderation, they can increase your heart rate, making you feel jittery and anxious.
Warm up, not stretch: Stretching can strain cold muscles leading to injuries. Rather, opt for a warm up like skipping rope or jogging. They will prepare your body for the strenuous physical activities awaiting you.
Static stretching: Static stretching is the stretching of a muscle to its furthest point for about 15-20 seconds. Just because pre-workout stretch is not recommended, it does not mean you cannot stretch altogether. In fact, post workout stretch can cool down your body.
Hydration for restoration: Just as important it is to hydrate pre-workout, so is post-workout hydration, to replace the water lost through sweat.
Foam rollers over painkillers: An intense workout session can leave your muscles sore but that should not encourage you to give into painkillers. Painkillers can be hazardous to health if taken for a long period of time. Instead, try a foam roller: a cylindrical lightweight foam known used to relieve muscle soreness.
Staying in sweaty clothes: Change out of your sweaty clothes as soon as possible after working out to keep away from fungus and acne.
Don't waste your workout: Keeping in shape requires strong will power which requires keeping away from temptations like a perfect piece of chocolate cake. Those sweet devious temptations can comfort you temporarily, but erase all your hard work and make you feel guilty later on. Therefore, keep track of your calorie intake and enjoy your food in moderation.
Photo: LS Archive/Sazzad Ibne Sayed