Let’s talk about fitness! We all go to the gym with high hopes of finally getting that killer body we see in magazines, and expect to achieve it in little to no time. Unfortunately, most people’s metabolisms do not work as fast as expected and often need an extra push to get them to burn those unwanted calories away. Going to the gym is a great step towards getting fit and losing weight. However, without a solid strategy, you will just be wasting time. Here are some tips to help knock off the pounds a little bit faster.
1. When on the Treadmill
Treadmills are one of the most popular types of exercise equipments that are able to deliver effective aerobic workouts. Treadmills are immobile cardio machines that give exercisers the choice to walk, run or jog inside of a gym. Treadmills have speeds and inclines that are adjustable to suit the preference of the person working out. Treadmills are often used by people that do not like to exercise outside because of the weather. Here’s a tip on how to effectively use a treadmill machine to maximize your calorie burn:
Increase the incline.
- By increasing the incline, you’ll burn off a few more extra calories than you normally would. Even if a person walks or runs at an incline set to a low percentage they burn more calories than someone who is running or walking on a level surface. Raising the incline will strengthen your thigh and butt muscles and give you the beach body we all hope for.
2. When on the Elliptical
The elliptical does not put pressure on the knees’ joints which is why it is a highly favorable exercise machine for the majority of exercisers. You can burn as many as 600 calories an hour by exercising on the elliptical. The results of the elliptical can include stronger and better improved quadriceps, hamstrings and butt and hip muscles. Use this simple tip to make sure that the elliptical burns fat for you:
Use the handles
- Be sure to use the handles to achieve a full-body workout by regularly pushing and pulling on them. On the other hand, don’t rely on the handles for support so you can burn more calories and exercise the upper body.
3. Use your arms
Using your arms in exercises does not only tone and define the weak arms, but also increases the arms’ muscle mass by exercising the muscles in the front and back of your upper arms. Having upper body strength is just another thing to check off of your getting fit checklist. This step will help you reach your body goal even faster. Here’s a tip for using your arms:
Incorporate arms into exercises
- Another great way to burn extra calories is to use the arms when doing leg exercises. Just simply pumping your arms while running on the treadmill can make the process of toning the legs and arms much easier. Also, using your arms while running is known to make athletes run faster by keeping the body balanced and giving athletes more power.
4. Do not work out on an empty stomach
Some people think that is better to work out on an empty stomach and they are so very wrong! Eating a simple snack as long as it is nourishing can make all the difference in your performance at the gym. How are you supposed to burn more calories if you are too weak to do so? Here’s a tip when it comes to eating before hitting the gym:
Eat light and healthy
- Exercising on an empty stomach will not only negatively affect your health but can also weaken your performance level. It is important to fuel the body with enough nutrients so you don’t become tired or even dizzy. This way, you’ll have enough energy to support the rigorous activity you are about to put your body through. Eat Small meals or snacks between one to three hours before working out.According to the Mayo Clinic, eat a light breakfast or drink something such as a sports drink with enough carbohydrates for maximum energy.
5. Don’t skip stretching.
Before dancers perform and athletes play, they all do something that can benefit their performance which is stretching. Those who do not stretch may find stretching to be time consuming but in reality the activity should take no longer than five minutes. Here’s a tip on how stretching can affect the way you exercise at the gym.
Understand stretching techniques
- Stretching is essential part of exercise and helps loosen the body for workout. By making the muscles flexible, stretching prepares them for exercise and helps them relax afterward. However, some forms of stretching can weaken the muscle strength, so do stretches that mimics the activities you are planning to do. This will give way to an easy transition to warm-up and workout.
6. Know your limits
Exercisers often try to outdo records they set the last time they were at the gym. However, it is imperative to note when your body is being overworked. Here’s a tip to keep in mind to avoid overworking your body:
- Always be aware of your body’s limits and know when you’re pushing it too far. If an exercise is too challenging then modify it until it becomes something you can do. The key is to not drain the body by attempting hard fast-paced exercises but to keep your energy and work your way up to those exercises, burning more calories in the process.
7. Switch it Up!
A major part of getting fit is based on the exercises that you choose. After a while, your body becomes relaxed and comfortable with the exercises and these exercises no longer has the needed effect on your body as it did before. Adding new concepts in exercises will keep your body alert so it can never become lazy. This tip explains how creativity in workouts can maximize calorie burn at the gym.
Get creative with your workouts
- Switching up your exercise routine will continually challenge your body causing it to burn even more calories. Repetition can get boring and may result in people becoming less enthusiastic about exercise and eventually quitting. Get creative with your routines on a regular basis and you’ll start to see the difference in your body.
8. Create the right mental space
Have you ever wondered why joggers on the streets, if not all the time but majority of the time, have earphones plugged into their ears? It is to serve as a distraction for the rest of the blocks they have to jog. The same is seen in the gym when exercisers on treadmills listen to music to take themselves away from the serious gym atmosphere. Here is a tip creating the right mental space for working out:
Music helps #gymplaylist
- If you’re lacking the motivation to workout, try listening to music. Surprisingly, by exercising to your favorite fast-paced and energetic songs, workouts do not seem to be as intense as they actually are. Music will allow exercisers to workout even longer because the music is putting them in a different zone.
9. Exercise with a friend
Sharing your exercise journey with a friend can keep you from giving up on exercising whenever you get lazy, aggravated or tired when at the gym. Partners act as each other’s personal trainers and work together towards a common goal of a better body. In return, partners become each other’s fitspiration (fit inspiration). Here’s how a partner can help you achieve calorie burn at the gym.
- Working out with a partner that is as equally motivated as you are can encourage you to stay on track by giving you some healthy competition. Working out with friends can seem a lot more lively and entertaining than working out alone. Goals are set and hit when you have an accountability partner. And when working out with a friend, you are less likely to make excuses and pass on exercising.
10. Exercise large muscles
When you want to burn a lot of calories at the gym, target the big muscle groups. If you are not going for too much of a muscular look then only do the required minimum to burn those extra calories off and to avoid becoming too buff and bulky. Otherwise, go for it!
Make a plan to work on specific parts on different days
- In order to burn serious fat start engaging in exercises that work out the larger muscle groups such as your thighs, butt and chest. The more you exercise these muscles, the greater the calorie burn. So next time you head to the gym be sure to incorporate large muscle activities for maximum calorie burn in your gym workouts.
N.B. Please consult a doctor before any vigorous workout, especially if you have an injury.