We all make mistakes, right? Well, it seems that when it comes to fitness, mistakes are all too common. It could be due to a lack of experience or a lack of effort, but perhaps the biggest mistake of all is to assume that any exercise is good exercise. Most people start exercising with the goal of getting in better shape, fit into their old clothes, or to feel better, but often leave the gym feeling exhausted and unmotivated. In this blog, we’re going to talk about some of the most common workout mistakes, why they matter, and how to avoid them. Keep reading to learn more and contact Fitness Specialists if you’re ready to start your own in-home gym.

Not warming up

The warm-up is one of the most important parts of your workout. Warm-ups not only prep your muscles for a strenuous workout, they also prepare your nervous system. Warm-ups are a way of letting your body know that it’s time to work out, reducing the chance that you will experience a skipped heartbeat and allow you to work out longer and exert more force with less effort.

Generally speaking, warming up before a workout will loosen your muscles and prepare them for a high-intensity workout. Muscles that are not warmed up beforehand will be more prone to injury and slower recovery times.

Many people are under the impression that warm-ups are only intended for runners or aerobics. However, warm-ups are equally important for weight lifters as well. Just jogging a few laps around the track should be enough to get your heart rate to a healthy level for weightlifting.

Not stretching

Warming up isn’t the only thing you need to do before your workout. Stretching is also a crucial component of a safe and effective workout. Stretching increases your range of motion (ROM) by keeping your ligaments and tendons elastic and your muscles relaxed and ready to be worked. However, what most people will do is called static stretching where you hold one stretch for around 60 seconds. This type of stretching has actually proven to restrict blood flow and lead to lactic acid buildup. This can lead to sore or injured muscle, tendinous, or lymphatic tissues.

“Active” stretching is a more modern style of stretching that will help you avoid these issues while still getting a good stretch in. By holding stretches for a short period of time, you’ll be working with your body’s natural physiological makeup and prevent poor circulation while you work out.

Not trying other forms of cardio

There’s nothing wrong with running as your sole source of cardio. However, you may be missing out on a lot by not trying other forms of cardio. It’s commonly thought that running long distance is the best way to burn fat and improve lung strength, but research has found that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is actually much better for your heart and helps you lose weight faster. What this implies is a period of high-intensity workout like a sprint, followed by a low-intensity period or period of rest.

Another great form of cardio is the rowing machine. Like running, you’ll be able to determine the intensity of workout that suits you best. Additionally, you’ll be working your back, legs, and arms, whereas with running, you’re only working your legs.

Contact Fitness Specialist

Fitness Specialist is your local supplier for in-home fitness equipment in Amarillo and the surrounding area. We have everything from residential to commercial equipment, ellipticals, treadmills, home gyms and much more. Contact us today if you have any questions about our products.

Read part two of this blog to learn more common fitness mistakes you should avoid.