When you want to get in shape and build muscle, there are many things to consider. It is not only about lifting weights, there other factors to consider to improve a workout performance. Proper hydration, stretching, and post-workout recovery are important factors that can optimize your performance.
If an individual wants optimize his or her workout, then he or she must stay properly hydrated. According to bodybuilding.com, water is the single most important nutrient for bodybuilders. Proper hydration will ensure the body’s systems, such as the brain, lungs, kidneys, and muscles, are balanced to ensure maximum benefits while working out. When an individual is dehydrated, then the most common symptom can be fatigue, which will have a drastic impact on his or her workouts. Dehydration can also be a cause of decreased endurance and a slow muscle response.
Since water is a crucial element is transporting nutrients to cells, proper hydration is essential to move and flex muscles. When an individual is dehydrated, then they will not have enough electrolytes and have an increased risk of muscle cramps. In order to stay hydrated, an individual should not wait until his or her workout begins to start drinking water. It is recommended that an individual drink water throughout the day before a workout, so his or her body is properly hydrated before a workout begins.
Stretching is a great way to make certain that an individual does not incur pulled or torn muscles. There are many individuals who will try to stretch cold muscles, which can cause more harm than good. When an individual does not know how to stretch properly, he or she is at an increased risk for tears. Furthermore, an individual who does not know how to stretch properly may not be able to lift to his or her capacity during a weight training session.
Proper stretching can increase strength and help an individual recover faster between sets. The key to proper stretching is to stretch the antagonistic muscle in comparison to the muscle that is being worked. Antagonistic muscles are simply muscle pairs. If an individual just completed a set that worked his or her triceps, then they should stretch the bicep.
According to Muscle & Fitness, intense stretching of the trained muscles right after the workout is complete is one of the best secrets in weight training. One example of intense stretching would be to go beyond the light stretching that is usually performed, so it should hurt mildly but not too much. Muscle & Fitness stated that research has proven intense stretching can raise the rate of “hypertrophy through the increased activation of satellite cells and the enhanced release of growth factors within muscle tissue,” which makes it an effective anabolic activator.
Post-workout recovery also maximizes a workout because it helps the body recover faster than normal. Massage and the right post-workout nutrition are essential for repairing minor tears that are normal with weight training. The right amount of protein consumed post-workout is crucial for rebuilding muscles. It is also important to consume the right amount of carbohydrates after a weight training session, which will adequately restore glycogen, energy, and insulin levels. Foods that are high in potassium can also help repair the body post-workout because they contain calcium, which is needed for muscular energy production.
A light massage post-workout can also help maximize a body building session. According to mensfitness.com, a light massage can aid in muscles recovering faster. Light massages aid in injury prevention that can help a bodybuilder stay on his or her routine. Furthermore, a light massage post-workout can increase circulation and help supply oxygen to muscles that incurred microscopic damage during a weight training session.
Specific supplements can aid in recovery as well. I personally prefer Progenex Recovery, but this is due to the fact that I train in Crossfit. For people who are looking into supplements I recommend that they start with less expensive supplements that can be found on Amazon. Just keep in mind that nutrition is more important than supplements, supplements can help, but they aren’t a magic pill.
The right training methods, such as the three tips mentioned, will help ensure an individual gains the maximum benefits from his or her workout and recovers quickly for the next one. Proper hydration, stretching, and post-workout recovery are the best ways to ensure an individual stays injury free and has the most productive workout.
Ryan Blair has been involved in the fitness industry for over 12 years. He currently passes his time by writing for various fitness related websites and blogs, if you would like to contact him you can do so at: www.linkedin.com