When you’re finally able to get yourself out of bed to go workout, there are few steps that you should take before and after your workout to make sure that you get the best outcome possible. I turned to The Skinny Confidential and combined it with my own personal experiences to find some ways to amplify your workout and maximize success.
The most important way to make sure you get a great workout is to get the appropriate amount of sleep. I aim to sleep around eight hours a night, which could be hard for some other college students. If you don’t clock in enough hours, it will not only cause you to put in less effort, but it could drastically affect your metabolism. Sleep deprivation causes levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) to increase, which can affect the body’s ability to process glucose. Without the proper amount of sleep, one will lose all desire to workout.
I always need to have something in my stomach before I workout to give me the energy to power through. Even though my stomach tells me I should pig out, my mind keeps me in check, forcing me to choose something light. Some of my favorite go-to snacks include a banana with almond butter or a handful of almonds. Also, I try to eat within 30 minutes after completing my workout. Usually, I save my meals for this time. I know that my body at least needs a snack rich in protein in order to restore its depleted levels of glycogen and electrolytes. Some of my favorites are protein shakes or a salad with turkey, chicken, or tofu.
Hydrating is extremely important for your body, especially while working out. I firmly believe that you can never drink too much water. Make sure that you replenish the fluids that you sweat out by drinking before, during, and after your workout. A general rule of thumb is to drink eight glasses of water a day. Water is not only important to keep you up and running, but also it can aid in weight loss, digestion and give you energy!
Make sure to get a good stretch in before and after working out. Before a workout, make your stretching dynamic, incorporating a light jog with high knees or butt kicks to get the blood flowing. After a workout, you should do more static stretching. Following a run, make sure to stretch out your quads and calves so that you do not wake up stiff in those areas the next day.
Next time you work out, think about incorporating these tips and tricks to make sure it’s as successful as possible!