For the New Year, we all get excited to begin our new health and fitness goals. However, our excitement often turns into going extreme and killing ourselves at the gym. This is not good at all, because you can injure your body in the process.
Fitness guru Jillian Michaels shares six common fitness blunders that could be keeping you from getting the best caloric burn from your workouts.
Working Out on an Empty Stomach:
In the past we believed working out on an empty stomach would burn more fat. In fact, your body needs some glucose (blood sugar) for fuel in addition to what it can use from fat stores when you’re working out.
If you don’t have any blood sugar available, your body can eat its own muscle tissue to get glycogen for fuel once it runs out of available blood sugar or glycogen stores. Low blood sugar will also make you tired and sluggish — and maybe even dizzy — during your training session.
Many studies show that working out on an empty stomach will make you perform worse and keep you from having an intense workout. Jillian suggests eating something 45 minutes to an hour before training — you’ll have more energy and endurance to work harder, burn more calories, and improve your muscle tone. Quick healthy organic yogurt with berries, a banana, or these no bake oatmeal peanut butter bites. Fuel your body for an intense workout and you will burn more calories during and after the workout is over.
Avoiding Strength Training:
Many women avoid strength training for fear of getting “bulky”. This myth is exactly that, a myth. For anyone to get bulky, male or female, he or she would have to eat a tremendous amount of calories. Plus, gaining muscle is harder for women because we simply don’t have the same hormones that men do. So accept and welcome resistance training.
The benefits are awesome. Resistance training has been shown to maintain lean muscle mass, build bone density, boost metabolism, and burn fat more effectively than just cardio alone.
- Add high-intensity interval training (HIIT) into your fitness routine by throwing an intense cardio interval into your resistance-training circuits. For example, you can add a minute of jumping rope, sprinting, or doing jumping jacks to jack up your heart rate and burn a ton of calories, and then you go back into the resistance-training sets. This way, you maximize BOTH your time and your calorie burn. When a set of these moves are done, you go back to the beginning and do them again before moving on to the next circuit.
A typical circuit-training workout will get your heart rate up and impact various muscles — not just one body part. Then, you can constantly switch up your circuits to hit different areas of the body.
Getting Stuck in a Workout Rut:
Often people have a routine that they do in the gym every time they go. This is not ideal for several reasons. First, you can get an overuse injury from repetitive training. Second, you will eventually plateau and stop seeing progress because your body has adapted to the routine to the stimulus you subject. If you don’t constantly change up your workout then you cheat your body of opportunities to get more fit.
Try changing the types of exercises you are doing and playing with the amount of sets, reps, and weights you are lifting. Also, try adding new classes to your regimen like Jillian Micheals’ BODYSHRED class. Break out of your comfort zone and try something new.
o see the original post and full list of bad fitness habits, head over to jillianmichaels.com .