How to Get the Most Out of a Lifting Session
There are an incredible amount of factors that go into the results you get from lifting weights. Some things are out of your control like your age or your genetics, but some things you may not be aware of have an effect on your performance. Check out these tips and things to consider in order to optimize your experience in the gym. Our resident 2 time Olympic champ Kevin Weiss has a few pointers to share.
As you likely know drinking fluids is necessary in almost all physical practices. With weight training in particular, there is a huge negative impact that starts being noticeable when an athlete has lost as little as 2% of their fluids.
Drinking 16-32 ounces of water an hour before a workout helps build a solid base of hydration for your body. Taking time to drink water every 15 minutes during a workout keeps hydration levels stable. If it is especially hot or humid, drink water every 10 minutes instead.
Pump up the volume
Everyone that hits the gym or goes for a run, doesn’t want so-so results. In fact, studies show that people who listen to music to hype up their work out have higher rates of calories burned. The same goes when it comes to calming down our bodies to relax after a rigorous gym session. Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology studies show that out of 30 men and women who listen to relaxing music post workout tend to recover faster than normal rate. This is due to our body’s ability to produce serotonin and dopamine. This hormonal combination helps our bodies power through the pain and straight to recovering in no time.
Timing is Key
Many of us base our workout schedule on whenever we can find the time outside of our daily responsibilities. However, there is some research that suggests that when it comes to intense physical performance, people generally perform at a higher level in the evening instead of the morning.
That being said, morning workouts are still much better than no workout at all and everybody is unique. If you normally workout in the morning though, it may be worth opting for the after work lifting session if your schedule allows it.
When to Stretch
Any yogi will happily tell you about all the benefits both physical and spiritual that can come from a proper stretching session, but what about when it comes to lifting weights? There is actually data that shows a reduction in performance for explosive athletes like sprinters when they do static stretching beforehand.
Before a weightlifting session, opt for moving stretches like arm circles, high knees, and lunges to get blood flowing to the muscles you are about to work out. After you complete your lifting session, stationary stretching helps reduce soreness and prevent injury, and therefore should be a part of any good cooldown routine.