By Katie Ferraro
Few things are more frustrating than struggling all the way through a challenging WOD. There are many things you can do to avoid the struggle and set yourself up for a successful, satisfying workout. We’ve compiled five tips to help you get the most benefit out of your daily exercise routine.
- Eat well and hydrate. While it’s tough to rank the importance of the tips on this list, eating well and hydrating is easily at the top. After all, fitness is 80 percent diet. Our bodies are machines, and if we expect them to run efficiently, we need to fill them with nutrient-rich foods and plenty of water. All bodies are different, so finding the eating plan that’s right for you is essential. When it comes to water consumption, if you’re drinking around 1 oz. of water per pound of body weight, you’re doing your body well.
- Sleep. When it comes to health and wellness paired with a busy lifestyle, the first thing to get pushed to the wayside is usually sleep. I’m sure you’ve heard people say, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” While ambition and drive are wonderful qualities, sleep is a necessity to both making series gains in the gym and prolonging life. We’re striving to kill it in the gym in order to live a happy, heathy life. Sleep is a non-negotiable.
- Mobility. As an athlete, you can never do too much mobility. It may not be as exciting as a high intensity WOD, but it’s just as important—if not more. Poor mobility generally results in inefficient movement and positioning, which can lead to plateaus in numbers and/or injury. So, grab a friend and get mobile!
- Realistic expectations. When you walk into the gym and check out the WOD, setting realistic expectations based on your skill set as an athlete will set you up for success. This means scaling appropriately to allow yourself to grow as an athlete. It will also keep you safe from injury. The beauty of CrossFit is that it’s scalable by design and encourages athletes to work within their comfort level.
- Purpose. If you don’t have a purpose for why you train, motivating yourself can be difficult. Despite our best efforts, we all have days that finding the motivation to get to the gym may be tough. Our personal purpose will give us that extra push to get to the gym. Whether it’s to have a beach-ready body, to establish a healthy lifestyle, or to always have energy for your family after a long day at work, purpose is both personal and extremely powerful.
When you head to the gym tomorrow, ask yourself: Are you hydrated and fueled? Did you get enough sleep? Have you mobilized lately? If you answer yes to all, you’re well on your way to a great workout. Setting realistic expectations and remembering why you do this will all but guarantee the workout of the day will leave you feeling satisfied and accomplished.