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12 Days of Fitness 2016: Day 2 – 5 Ways You’re Self-Sabotaging Your Workouts

December 12, 2016 0 Comments

(This is Part 2 of a 12 part series to provide you with some useful health and fitness info over the holiday season)

Fitness is my business and nothing can be more frustrating than witnessing those who actually make the time to exercise but are wasting their time in their approach. Simply showing up and going through the motions doesn’t count let alone is not very effective. If you can make the time, make the most of your time. Exercise in whatever form is only as good as the effort and consistency you put forth. Here are some of the most common mistakes I have seen throughout the years in the hopes that I can create awareness if you are guilty of them yourself.

  1. Swinging Weights. This is a very common mistake, often caused by lifting weights that are too heavy. The endless benefits of resistance training can only be achieved if you’re controlling your movements. Whatever exercise you’re doing, be sure to control each motion of the exercise in order to maximize results. Control is key as is injury prevention.
  1. Holding on the Treadmill. Cardio is an excellent form of exercise but most are missing out on the majority of the calorie burn. The treadmill is one of the most popular pieces of cardio equipment but when you grip on to the sidebars of the treadmill, you’re sacrificing your calorie burn. Instead, either swing your arms as you go or if you need a grip to maintain your balance just make sure it’s a very light one.
  1. Too Much Waiting Around. In this era of smartphones, too much time is wasted checking messages or status updates – or by checking one’s self in the mirror. Socializing is one thing but the more time you spend between exercises the more you’re allowing your heart rate to return to normal. Keeping your heart rate elevated during a workout is essential to burning the most calories and/or building muscle. So get at it and stay at it.
  1. Stretching in Between Exercises/Sets. Stretching is an important component of any fitness routine to increase muscle recovery, prevent injury, and decrease soreness. However, when you stretch in between exercises you are hampering their ability to perform their best with the next exercise/set. Studies have proven stretching in between may actually decrease the amount of weight you are able to lift and weaken the stability of joints.
  1. Virtual Insanity. Most gyms/health clubs don’t need clocks, or calendars for that matter because you can always tell the time of day/day of week by what you’re witnessing. Doing the same exercises in the same way is not going to yield any different results. Muscles need to evolve whatever the goal; doing the same thing all the time will yield the same result – zero!

See you tomorrow for Day 3 of the 12 Days of Fitness

Til next time, train smart, eat well, and be better.

 

Just in case, here’s what you might have missed:

Day 1 – Why Not Eating Enough Won’t Help You Lose Weight

 

About the Author:

Jeff Harrison is a fitness coach based in Pottstown, PA. He received a BS in Exercise and Sport Science from Penn State University and is an NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), NSCA Certified Personal Trainer (NSCA-CPT) and ACE Advanced Health and Fitness Specialist (ACE-AHFS). Jeff's articles have been published in peer-reviewed journals as well as consumer oriented websites and magazines.

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