Getting into a regular exercise routine is undeniably challenging for many people. Other tasks often need to take priority, and exercise can come secondary to our busy schedules.
With the time available to workout often being so limited, it’s important to ensure that we are optimizing each opportunity to ensure an effective workout.
With this in mind, wellbeing experts at CBDolie.nl have shared their top tips to make your exercise routines more effective, whether that be at home or at the gym.
Get sufficient sleep
Getting plenty of sleep has positive effects on your daily life. Not only does it impact your mood or concentration, but it also gives you strength to get you through your workout. When you sleep, your body usually goes through different stages. In the first stage, brain activities start to slow down, but the body is yet to go into a completely relaxed state.
The next stage is when the body temperature and heart rate start to decrease, meaning your muscles become more relaxed. After this, your body then goes into a deep sleep, increasing blood flow and growth hormones. Growth hormones are what help repair your body and grow muscles. When you do not get enough sleep, it will only result in a lack of energy when working out.
The average adult needs 8 hours of sleep to get a good night’s sleep, and experts recommend that a strict bedtime and wake-up time should be established. Avoid using your phone and eating unhealthy snacks before you sleep will also improve sleep quality.
Eat the right food
‘Should I eat before a workout?’ is a question frequently asked by many, and the answer is typically yes. However, that does not mean having a heavy meal, as it can increase the chances of indigestion. Your body needs time to break down the carbohydrates from the food and convert them into glucose, which is the energy released into the bloodstream and used by the muscles. It is why carb-rich snacks are preferred by many, such as bananas, oats, or even the classic protein shake and smoothies, as these provide the most energy. Experts recommend waiting around two to three hours after eating before you exercise.
Your post-workout meal is what should include the most protein. Foods such as whole eggs, chicken breast, and lean beef are rich in amino acids, which is what helps repair and strengthen muscles. Overall, eating a balanced diet will not only boost your workout performance but also contributes to muscle recovery afterward.
Use muscle balm
After working out, you will experience muscle soreness, and this is because the connective tissue surrounding your muscles is damaged. While this is certainly normal and part of the repair process that leads to muscle growth, many athletes and gymgoers use CBD, also known as cannabidiol, to relieve the pain. CBD cream or warming muscle balm is a common solution to soothing the pain and helps joints remain flexible.
Listen to music
There are numerous benefits of listening to music when working out. According to a study in 2021 by Professor Christopher Ballmann at the Health Science Department at Samford University, listening to music increases your endurance and heart rate, and it lifts your mood, leading to feeling more motivated and improved performance.
Songs with a fast tempo usually help increase your heart rate; ideally, songs between 120 to 140 BPM are found to increase your heart rate. Additionally, most avid gymnasts listen to songs that include lyrics as it gives meaning to the music and triggers your brain to think of things that will lift your mood. A perfect example is Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” as this was a song used in the 1982 blockbuster movie Rocky III, which was related to boxing.
Nonetheless, music comes in different genres, so create and listen to a music playlist with your favourite songs to help you enjoy your workout session.
Warm up and stretch
One of the most common mistakes when working out is jumping right into sets. Warming up and stretching before doing any exercise increases blow flood and oxygen, which helps reduce muscle tension and brings plenty of benefits, such as increased flexibility and a better range of motion.
It is also worth noting that the type of stretches you do play a significant role in your workout routine. Dynamic stretches are usually done before a workout to increase your body temperature and help avoid injuries. This includes exercises that involve a wide range of motion, such as leg swings, star jumps, and lunges, to name a few.
On the other hand, static stretches are done after your workout. Unlike dynamic stretching, this does not involve continuous movement but rather held in the same position for a brief period. Knee-to-chest and toe touches are examples of static stretches that will help slow down the blood flow, making your muscles return to their relaxed state. This not only increases flexibility but also decreases the risk of injury.