In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s nearly impossible to set aside the time you need at the gym each day. It seems there are always more “important” things to be doing. When you do get into the gym, avoid these 7 time wasters.
1 – Don’t work out too much! Sounds contradictory? It’s not. I know of people who spend 90 minutes on cardio, then another hour on weights and who knows how much time researching the latest supplements. You’re body can only benefit from a certain amount of exercise. Go over that amount and it’s all wasted.
2 – Stop stopping for too long! You know if you’re one of these people. You see a friend walk in the gym who you haven’t seen in a while and suddenly your heart rate is too high and you need to rest “for a little bit.” Don’t stop everytime you have a chance. It’s not going to help you reach your goals.
3 – Plan your workouts. Make sure you know what exercises you’re going to do, how many reps you’ll do of each and how much weight you’re going to use. If you’re constantly trying to figure things out on the fly, you’ll double your time in the gym.
4 – Not having a backup plan- There is nothing more frustrating then going to the gym with your plan in hand and someone is already using the machine! Having a backup plan ensures you spend more of your time in the gym exercising and less time feeling frustrated. If someone is using the chest machine, no big deal: Do push-ups instead.
5 – Get intense! Push yourself further than you thought you could go. Physical gains don’t happen when you’re barely pushing yourself. You need to be going to failure on almost every exercise. Even if you’re just building strength and have no interest in bulk, you should still work to failure, just at a higher level. Remember, bulk comes between 8 and 10 reps and strength comes when you’re doing between 12 and 15.
6 – Not using your full range of motion- If you are not using your full range of motion when performing your exercises, you can be sure that you are wasting your time. Be sure you are using correct form to be sure you are getting the results you desire.
7 – Get a check-up from a professional. If a regular meeting with a personal trainer isn’t in your budget, consider having a check up ever 90 days to make sure you’re maximizing your time in the gym. A professional trainer will know how to get you through that plateau and on to bigger gains.
That’s it. The top 7 things that could be wasting your time in the gym. Maybe all 7 didn’t apply to you directly, but there’s something there you can do to improve the quality of your workouts. Pick one item and focus on that for a week. Then pick another one. Pretty soon you’ll be maximizing your time in the gym.