What Are You Doing Outside the Gym?

27 Jan

M_Id_122832_Walking_the_dog[1]OK, so you’ve hit the gym a few times this week, and you’re feeling pretty good about it (as well you should).  And, since the effects of your workout are both cumulative and residual (studies show that the metabolic impact of resistance training persists in your musculature for up to 48 hours), you’re getting a good return on your exercise investment.

Keep doing what you’re doing and, additionally, consider this:  There are 168 hours in a week.  If you’re working out 2-3 days a week, for an hour each day, that leaves a lot of time spent outside the gym or weight room.  Are your efforts outside the gym complementing your time spent exercising?

Diet & Nutrition

There’s no need to be extreme or fanatical about what you eat, but your diet may be the single-most important aspect of your strength and fitness regimen.  You can drive a Ferrari but it won’t perform optimally on crappy fuel.  Same goes for your body.  The quantity of your dietary intake is important — you need an adequate and appropriate number of calories to consistently be at your best.  The quality of the foods you eat is equally important.  Your meals and snacks should be well-balanced, each incorporating clean carbs, healthy fats, and lean protein.  Check out my blog posts on pre- and post-workout nutrition.

Rest & Sleep

If you’re working hard in the weight room, your muscles need time to adequately recover and regenerate.  Always allow a day of rest between workouts, especially if the workouts involve similar muscle groups and movements.  And get a good night’s sleep on a consistent basis.  For most of us, 7-8 hours a night should help to ensure that we are ready to face the challenges of the day — mentally and physically.

Stay Active

Engage in outside activities and interests that require you to move around.  Cut the grass, work in your garden, walk the dog, take a hike or bike ride, go bowling.  Avoid excessive periods of inactivity.  Limit your time in front of the television and/or computer.  Don’t allow yourself to be sedentary.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

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