Project Stunning Part II: 5 Common Workout Mistakes

Time to Workout

Workout Time!  Are you ready?

As a fitness enthusiast, I’ve tried so many different types of workouts – running, kickboxing, body steps, weight training, circuit training, plyometric training, yoga, Surf Set, pilates, TRX… I think I might be considered a workout junkie to most people!  Daily workout is really my lifestyle and I have a love/hate relationship with it.  It is hard work (not going to lie) and painful sometimes but I love seeing the results (tight glutes, toned arms, flat abs.)  In case you don’t know, the pain is where the change is happening.  If you don’t feel it during your workout, you are not making any change.  How ironic, isn’t it?

color run

My friend and I participated in the 5K color run.  If you enjoy outdoor activities, try signing up for a fun run with your friends.  You will sweat a bucket and have a blast while doing it!

A common thinking is that as long as you are working out, you will be able to reach your weight-loss goals.  As a bride, you are probably very eager to get as many pounds off as you can in a short period of time and exercising is a great way to help you achieve that.  However, if you are not doing the exercises correctly, you are simply wasting your time and will only see mediocre results.  When this happens, you lose interest and quit too soon before you see the major change.  So in part 2 of Project Stunning, I want to share with you the 5 common workout mistakes that you should avoid so you can get the results that you want.

 

By all means this is not the complete list and you should always consult with a professional fitness trainer if you want to prevent injuries especially if you are just starting out.  Having someone point out your mistakes at the spot is by far one of the most important parts of your lifestyle change.  However, this list should help you get started on the right track!

 

Seawheeze

Brought home my first 1/2 marathon metal last month (August 2013) at the Seawheeze half marathon in Vancouver.

1.  You do the same workout over and over again.

We all have a tendency to do the same things that we like.  When we go to our favorite restaurant, we usually order the exact same dish that we love or are familiar with.  Most people don’t like to take risk, which is very understandable because we don’t know if we will like the new change.

But when it comes to working out, variety is really the spice of life.  It is important to know that after a certain amount of time, you should change your workout routines.  That means, if you are used to running very morning at 8am, try switching one or two of the days to a different type of exercise like kickboxing or circuit training.  The problem with sticking to the exact same exercise is that your body will get used to it.  When this happens, you will hit a plateau and lose the weight loss momentum.

How do you know that you’re hitting a plateau?  You no longer feel the pain after your workout.

 

2.  You don’t practice the right forms.

It is very common in the beginning of your weight-loss plan that you get overexcited and work out too hard too soon forgetting to pay attention to practicing the right forms.  Remember that your body has a learning curve and it takes time to adjust to the change.

At my gym, I saw so many people doing lunges, squats, push-ups, and weights incorrectly.  The interesting part is that some class instructors might not even point out their mistakes and would allow them to continue with their incorrect forms week after week.  Why is it important to practice good forms?  Not only will you get the result that you need but it is the best way to prevent injuries.

So, what should you do instead?  Schedule some personal training sessions with a trainer and ask him and or her to correct your forms.  Also, if you feel pain on your joints or spine (neck and lower back) during the workout, that is a definite red flag.

 

3.  You skip warm up and cool down.

It is interesting how many people skip the warm up and cool down of their daily workouts.  It is probably because they don’t see the importance or they are too eager to get into the high impact part of the workout.  I was the same in the beginning too because there is limited time to work out each day so I want to maximize the time that I spend doing it (i.e. burning calories.)

But skipping these crucial steps of your workout can potentially do you more harm than good.  The purpose of the warm up is to “wake up” your muscles by gradually pumping oxygen into your bloodstream to give the energy your muscles need during your workout.  When your muscles are not awake, you can easily damage the tissues – not a smart idea.  As for cool-down, you are stretching out the tired muscle tissues after an intense workout so it helps speed up the recovery process and reduce soreness the next day.

Most structured classes like kickboxing and circuit training will include a warm up and cool down.  If you are working out on your own, there are some warm up and cool down ideas that you can try.

 

4.  You are not focused while working out.

Yes, that’s right.  Talking on the phone while working out on the treadmill is highly not recommended.  As a woman, I have to admit that I love to multi-task.  It runs in my blood and it’s hard to resist the urge to save the world everyday.  Since you are making a commitment to a better you, you should focus on what you are doing instead of trying to tackle multiples things at once.

When you are distracted, you are not adding the intensity that you need to get your heart rate up.  Maximizing your heart rate during your workout is the key to burning more calories!  Your mental power is actually more powerful than your physical power.  So, the next time that you hear your phone ring at the gym, simply let your voicemail answer for you.

 

5.  You are sleep deprived.

What does sleep have to do with weight-loss?  So if you only sleep 6 hours every night, why would that affect your weigh-loss plan?  Surprising, sleep is the final factor to the weight-loss formula.  When you’re sleep deprived, your muscles don’t have enough time to recover from your daily activities and adding on an intense workout during the day will only increase the chance of injury.

 

Not only does getting enough sleep every night helps you achieve your weight-loss goal, but it will also strengthen your health by reducing the risk of health-related issues like heart diseases.  It is really true when people say “beauty sleep.”

Comment below and let me know if these tips help you!

XO Judy

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