Tuesday March 26, 2019

Work It Out : Follow These 8 Easy Steps Before and After your Gym Workout Routine for Better Results

Here are a few steps that can help you maximize the benefits of a good work out!

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Exercise alone is not enough to keep you in shape. You will have to do a few more extra things before and after your workout to stay fit! Pixabay

New Delhi, October 16, 2017 : Maybe you have just begun working out at a gym, or maybe you have been an active gym member for months. Maybe you have recently lost a lot of weight, or you may have bulked up and gained fuller body proportions. Whatever it may be, the credit for your fit and fabulous avatar is always given to the time you spend working out and exercising- and that’s where we are wrong.

While work out at the gym is crucial, it is not the only trick at work that makes you look your best! 

Your workout does not end with your last exercise or the last rep. Instead, it had already begun even before you entered the gym, and a complete workout lasts beyond all that you do at the gym.

Exercise alone is not enough to keep you in shape. The body demands proper rest and nutrition to be able to perform better at the gym and maximize benefits. For that, there are a few things that must be done before and after your gym workout.

Here are a few steps that can help you maximize the benefits of a good work out! Follow our best pre workout and post workout tips to maximize and experience the benefits of working out like never before.

PRE-WORKOUT TIPS

1. Don’t Compromise On The Sleep

After strenuous hours at the gym, who wouldn’t want to sleep? A sound sleep is key to being rewarded for the controlled diet and fitness efforts. It is one of the most important components of a healthy workout. When you sleep, your body is at complete rest. This allows your muscles to relax, recover and prepare for another day of workout at the gym.

According to a research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, it was proven that insufficient sleep – less than seven hours of sleep every night- can reduce and completely undo the benefits of dieting and workout.

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Being well rested not only energizes the body to exercise in the gym, but it also keeps the hunger hormones under check. Pixabay

But a common question is, do you need to sleep more when you exercise? 

The answer is a big yes.

After workout, when bodies receive adequate rest, they tend to lose half of the weight of body fat.

Being well rested not only energizes the body to exercise in the gym, but it also keeps the hunger hormones under check, thus saving you from consuming unnecessary food. This is because when we don’t sleep enough, the cortisol levels in our body rise, which activates regions in our brain that make us crave food.

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Brazilian researchers have previously proved that inadequate sleep hampers the body’s ability to make muscles, causes muscle loss and can also lead to an increased chance of sustaining injuries.

2. Consume Pre-workout Snacks

A simple mantra should be to not keep yourself starving, but also not make yourself feel full. Food means energy; if your body lacks basic energy, pulling yourself from the bed and walking all the way to the gym can be a hard, long walk.

While a full stomach will impede a successful workout, studies suggest that one can benefit from better results by consuming the right pre workout food. Lean proteins and carbohydrate rich foods make for the best pre-workout food.

Health experts suggest consuming low-fat pre workout food – these can include Greek yoghurt, fish, sweet potato and beans.

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Do not ignore a healthy pre-workout snack. Pixabay

3. Keep Yourself Hydrated

Working out is synonymous with sweating profusely. Hence, you must make sure you are well-hydrated as the body is losing water. Proper hydration levels also ensure required energy levels for the body for a successful workout.

Make sure you are sipping water before, in the middle of, and after your workout.

Although there is no standard for the quantity of water required, but you must aim to consume water worth half of your body weight in ounces every day.  Experts suggest drinking two to three cups of water a few hours before working out, in order to maintain hydration levels during workout.

4. Prepare Your Body With A Warm-Up

Would you prefer if somebody just pushed you off your bed, in an attempt to wake you up? You might get hurt and would be jostled, wouldn’t you?

Well, that is what a workout without warm up exercises feels like to the body.

Workout without a warm-up session is a complete no no.

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It is best to begin your gym workout with a dynamic warm-up routine. Pixabay

Warm-up gradually increases the heart rate and blood circulation; this loosens the joints and increases the blood supply to the muscles thus, preparing them for strenuous physical activity and also helping them prevent injuries.

The warm-up session is also a good opportunity to help prepare yourself mentally for a gym workout.

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POST WORKOUT TIPS

 

5. Cool Down and Stretch

Your body is continuously in motion while you are working out in the gym. After you are done with the exercises, abruptly bringing the body to rest will do more harm than benefit. Stretching proves a healthy option in such a scenario.

Stretching exercises are aimed to gradually bring the body to rest.

Stretching eases and primarily benefits the pumped muscles, and helps the nervous system relax and recover. It decreases muscle soreness and helps accelerate the recovery process.

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Stretching exercises are important. Period. Pixabay

6. Re-hydrate Your Body

As you work out and burn calories, the body sweats to cool itself down. If you do not hydrate yourself, you will end up losing unhealthy amounts of water from your body in the form of sweat and urine.

Proper hydration keeps the body temperature under check, and lubricates the joints, which further prevents injury.

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You must keep yourself well-hydrated at all times. Pixabay

7. Refuel Your Body With A Post-Workout Snack

When you work out, you do not only burn calories and lose carbohydrates, but also tear and work (sometimes over work) your muscles. Hence, it is important to repair the torn muscles and boost energy levels.

The anabolic window of the body lasts for over 30 to 45 minutes after a workout.  It is during this time that the body looks for proteins and carbohydrates to replenish and recover glycogen in the body and build muscles. This is why it is critical to provide the body with the required nutrition.

A pre-workout snack is optional; however a post-workout snack holds more importance – it gives your body the much needed fuel to recover after a tough workout.

8. Post Workout Shower

Who doesn’t like a hot shower post working out in the gym; the hot water seems to ease the muscles and the body from aches. However, you should instead take a cool post-workout shower.

While working out, the heart rate increases and lactic acid builds in the muscles as they are deprived of oxygen.

Taking a cool shower immediately bring the heart rate and increase blood circulation, which in turn helps to reduce the recovery time for sore muscles.

Working out in the gym can cause small tears to the muscles, thereby causing muscle inflammation. A cold shower relives this soft tissue inflammation and the pain associated with it.

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Health experts recommend you should take a cold shower after working out. Pixabay

Now if you ask us the mantra to maximize the results of hours of working out at the gym?

“Warm up. Sweat it out. And cool down”

That’s all you need to do to make sure your body remains healthy.

– prepared by Soha Kala. Twitter : SohaKala

Next Story

Having Healthy Breakfast and Short TV Watching Span Can Lead To A Healthier Heart

Compared to those watching less than seven hours of TV per week, they were also twice as likely to have plaque buildup in the arteries, which is associated with an increased risk of stroke. 

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Similarly, only 18 per cent consuming a high-energy breakfast showed high plaque levels in the carotid arteries, as compared to 28 per cent of people skipping breakfast and 26 per cent of those consuming a low-energy breakfast. Pixabay

Want a healthy heart? Turning off the TV, being active and eating an energy-rich breakfast of milk, cheese and cereals everyday could be the key, suggest researchers in a new study.

The findings of the study showed that people who watched more than 21 hours of TV per week were 68 per cent more likely to have high blood pressure and 50 per cent more likely to have diabetes.

Compared to those watching less than seven hours of TV per week, they were also twice as likely to have plaque buildup in the arteries, which is associated with an increased risk of stroke.

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Instead of being sedentary, performing recreational activities, weight lifting, stretching bands or treadmill exercise while watching TV may also be a healthy alternative, Tsalamandris suggested.
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“Our results emphasise the importance of avoiding prolonged periods of sedentary behaviour,” said lead researcher Sotirios Tsalamandris, cardiologist at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens in Greece.

“These findings suggest a clear message to hit the ‘off’ button on your TV and abandon your sofa. Even activities of low energy expenditure, such as socialising with friends or housekeeping activities, may have a substantial benefit to your health compared to time spent sitting and watching TV.”

Instead of being sedentary, performing recreational activities, weight lifting, stretching bands or treadmill exercise while watching TV may also be a healthy alternative, Tsalamandris suggested.

Moreover, the researchers found that those who ate a high-energy breakfast tended to have significantly healthier arteries than those who ate little or no breakfast.

Eating high-energy breakfast also reduced arterial stiffness with only 8.7 per cent participants experiencing the condition, as compared to 15 per cent of those skipping breakfast and 9.5 per cent of those consuming a low-energy breakfast.

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Moreover, the researchers found that those who ate a high-energy breakfast tended to have significantly healthier arteries than those who ate little or no breakfast. Pixabay

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Similarly, only 18 per cent consuming a high-energy breakfast showed high plaque levels in the carotid arteries, as compared to 28 per cent of people skipping breakfast and 26 per cent of those consuming a low-energy breakfast.

The study, involving 2,000 people, will be presented at the American College of Cardiology’s 68th Annual Scientific Session in New Orleans, US. (IANS)