Corporate health and fitness company ‘Healthy Executives’ shares with you some common mistakes that people make with their workouts and nutrition.
A number of these mistakes can be very costly and can lead to injury and may be the difference between a successful and ineffective workout.
1. Not having breakfast – Skipping breakfast will slow the metabolism and have you reaching for the not so healthy options around mid morning. If you are not used to having breakfast then start with just a piece of wholegrain toast.
2. Not warming up or cooling down – Muscles need time to adjust to the demands of the activities placed on them. If you plan on going for a run then a slow increase in intensity will prepare your joints and muscles for what they are about to do. Take at least 3 – 5 minutes after any exercise to stretch your muscles. This is an ideal time to enhance your flexibility as your muscles are more pliable and can prevent injuries.
3. Too much caffeine – (more than 600mg can affect your health) A standard cup has 80mg. If you need a substance to change the way you feel (wake up or feel good) then you possibly have an addiction.
4. Not eating any carbohydrates – There is so much hype about carbohydrates that most people make the mistake of not having any at all. There are good carbs (fruit, wholegrain bread, rolled oats etc) and bad carbs (white flour, sugar, white rice etc). Include much more of the good stuff in your diet and moderate the portions of the bad carbs.
5. Wearing the same exercise shoes for too long – 750km of running or about 1 year of use is ideal. Wearing the same shoes for too long can lead to overuse injuries in the lower leg (knees, shins, ankles and feet).
6. Not enough sleep – Ideally aim to get around 8 hours. Studies have shown that not getting enough sleep can lead to lowered immune system and heart disease.
7. Lifting more weight than you can handle- : You know you are lifting too much weight when your technique is sacrificed in order to lift a heavier load. Gradually increase the resistance of your workout to prevent injury. Talk to any bodybuilder and they will tell you it is not about how much weight you lift. If you have to jerk your body while lifting your weight then you are lifting too much.
8. Not drinking enough water – Keep a bottle of water on hand to top up your fluid levels. If you wait till you are thirsty – you are already dehydrated.
9. Not exercising intensely enough – Leaning on the side bars of the stair-master will lower the intensity of the workout as well as put a strain on your wrists and lower back. If your intention is to lose body-fat then you will need to exercise intensely enough to get you huffing and puffing with a light sweat.
(c) Healthy Executives 2009