These days, it’s not uncommon for an apartment community to have a gym on site. This is good and bad.
Good because residents have one less excuse for not working out. And bad because…residents have one less excuse for not working out.
As you might have guessed, I’m not a gym rat. So when I go, I want to make the most of my time there. I did a little research and, apparently, with a few new exercise, eating and sleep habits, I can start to see better results.
Here are five little-known tips I learned for getting a better workout:
Most on-site gyms have treadmills (100 Midtown in Atlanta is no exception), and running is a popular form of exercise, so I think many of you will find this first tip useful.
Don’t stretch before running.
All of us have probably heard the exact opposite advice, so this one might come as a shock. But according to a recent study, runners who stretch before running burn 5% fewer calories than runners who don’t stretch. Turns out stretching decreases muscle-force production capacity.
I like working out on the elliptical (also common in on-site fitness centers, like the one at 777 Place in Pomona, California). And, judging by the wait, so does everyone else at my gym. But I’ve been doing it wrong. If I want to work my core, that is.
Letting go of the handles will challenge your sense of balance and target your core. To help your posture, put your hands on your hips instead.
Switch it up every two weeks.
People who change their workouts twice a month are more likely to stick to their plans compared to those who change them whenever they want, according to a University of Florida study. As they say, variety is the spice of life.
Cycle your calorie intake.
That means eat more and less of your target calorie intake on different days. For example, if your target is 2,000 calories, eat 1,700 calories on Monday, 2,000 on Tuesday, and 2,300 on Wednesday, and repeat. Basically, you’re tricking your body into greater fat loss because you’re overriding its natural starvation mechanism.
Choose to snooze.
People who sleep less than five hours a night have a 73% chance of becoming obese. When you get between five and six hours of sleep, those odds drop to 27%— quite a dip! So if you’re losing sleep to hit the gym, you might not be doing yourself any favors.
Stay motivated at the gym with the help of The Ultimate Workout Playlist.