This One Mistake Can Ruin Your Workout
You probably suspect that there are plenty of secrets personal trainers won’t tell you for free. But when it comes to getting the maximum gains for your pain, here’s one complimentary tip from a certified PT: You might want to rethink the order of your workout. (These insider tips will help you get the most out of your gym membership.)
Most people head straight to the cardio machines before lifting a single dumbbell. While a bit of cardio gets your heart pumping and your muscles working, regularly hitting the treadmills first could backfire in the long run. That’s why personal trainer Max Lowery recommends starting your workout with weight training. (This is the best exercise to flatten your belly.)
“It’s a huge mistake doing your cardio and exhausting yourself before you do weights,” Lowery told the Independent. “If you want the weight session to be 100 per cent effective, you need to be fresh.”
According to Lowery, a hardcore cardio session can deplete your muscles’ stores of “explosive” energy, leaving you exhausted by the time you hit the weight room. As a result, your strength and weight training won’t be nearly as effective. Wearing yourself out before your weight session could also make you more vulnerable to injury, Lowery says. Plus, lifting weights one of the best calorie-busting exercises you can do. What do you have to lose?
But hitting the weights with tight, cold muscles won’t help you tone up, either. To avoid injury (and boost your gains!), you still need to properly prep your body. “Warming up your body gets blood flowing to help lubricate your joints, which can help prevent you from tearing something,” William Suggs, a certified personal trainer and licensed sports nutritionist in New York City, told Reader’s Digest. He recommends starting off with a brisk 10-minute walk or a light stretch.
Bottom line: To get real results from your workout routine, head for the weight rack ASAP.
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Originally published as The One Mistake You’re Making That Could Sabotage Your Workout on ReadersDigest.com.