Do you ever feel like you’re not getting as much from your exercise routine as you think you should? The thing is, when it comes to working out, most of us tend to focus on exercising alone, or more precisely, on what we do at the gym. However, what we do before and after the gym matters just as much, if not even more. Things like getting enough rest and eating right can make all the difference in how much your effort will show. So, here are some things you should add to your fitness routine if you want to achieve the best results possible.
Before your workout
Being well prepared for working out can help you stay motivated and energized, which is also bound to lead to better results. So, here are a few important things to do before working out.
Get enough sleep
Being well-rested means you’d have enough energy to work out for longer. It also prevents you from overeating, as you wouldn’t need food to get the extra energy if you’ve had plenty of rest. So, pay attention to your evening routine – you should put your electronics away at least an hour before bedtime, so the light doesn’t keep you awake. Instead, add something more soothing to your routine, like drinking tea, reading a book, going for a short walk, or simply listening to calming music.
Grab a snack
If you feel like you need some extra fuel even after a good night’s sleep, feel free to grab a snack. It’s safe to say that you need enough energy so you actually have something to use when working out. Just make sure the snack you choose is light and healthy, since a wrong choice could lead to stomach ache and bloating. And don’t eat too much – you don’t want to feel full, you just don’t want to starve and end up overeating after exercising. Taking some prework supplement product is also a good option, as it would provide your body with all the nutrients it needs for a successful workout.
After your workout
Your after-workout routine matters just as much as the pre-workout one, so here are a few things you can do after working out that would help your body recover faster.
Stretch it out
Just like you need to warm up before working out, you also need to cool down after. Cooling down helps your body “reset” in a way. Therefore, after your workout, do your stretches, and hold each of the stretches for at least 15 seconds. Also, since your muscles will be warmed up, don’t sit or lie down right after exercising. Moreover, if there is a specific type of exercise that you prefer, like cycling or jogging, you can simply slow down for 15-20 minutes before stopping. So, just like you would start slow, you should end slow too.
Enjoy a cold shower
Another good way to cool down is to quite literally take a cold shower. Of course, there is no guarantee that a cold shower will help you recover quicker, and there are certainly some people who can’t stand cold showers no matter the situation. In other words, it does depend on personal preference; if you feel mentally better and more relaxed after a cold shower, it’s very likely that it can help your body as well. Plus, if you prefer working out outside or if you tend to overheat while exercising, a cold shower might be helpful. Of course, this doesn’t mean it has to actually be ice cold – just turn down the temperature a bit, so it’s still enjoyable for you, and relax.
Working out is not just about going to the gym or outside and exercising. What you do before and after matters just as much, and sometimes, even more. After all, your body needs to be in the right shape for exercising, and you need to cool down properly after in order to get back to your other daily chores. So, think about the listed suggestions, pay attention to your daily routine, improve it in any way you can, and the results are bound to show in no time.