Let's PUMP the BREAKS for just a seeeeccconnnndddddd…..
Working out without a follow up routine after ALL that hard work isn't going to accelerate results! Instead you're just doing your body a disservice without giving it what it REALLY needs after a workout… which is:
1. You SKIPPED the STRETCH. I know we are ALL victims to skipping the stretch. Trust me, even I struggle with this daily! I have to remember that stretching not only elongates your muscles but speeds up the repairing of the natural tearing and stretching of working out, AND PREVENTS future injuries from happening.
Tip: Take two minutes to stretch before and after… ballistic stretching before a workout (think Olympic swimmer who bounce around and warm their muscles up before diving in a pool) and static stretches after (think deep lunges, hold, straddle stretch, hold--everything is a holding isolated pose)
2. You SKIPPED nutrition! EEEK… If I workout and don't take an amino acid and/or protein (Shakeology) drink after a workout, I know that my body is going to take longer to recover. The longer the recovery, the longer it takes to see results. The great thing about Shakeology is that it ALREADY has all your essential amino acids PLUS joint repair formula to help your muscles stay lubricated. Straight from the Shakeology FAQ link, "It's advised to add a little extra sugar in order to have a more optimal ratio of sugar to protein so that the sugars enable your body to carry to protein to your muscles." Which is why I add an extra scoop of my own isolated protein to not only increase my protein intake, but to have the right ratios!
Tip: Protein is critical after a tough workout because it works to repair your muscles. This is due to the fact that protein is comprised of amino acids, which serve as building blocks for muscle. If you can get some protein in your body fast, it can jump-start the recovery process. With 16 to 18 grams of quality protein in each serving, Shakeology works great as a muscle building tool and is absorbed perfectly after a work-out because your body in its depleted state is extra receptive to the nutrients.
3. You're recovery is a sports drink: AYEEE CARAAAAMBAAAA!!! NOO! I know Gatorade tastes like superficial flavoring awesomeness packed in a plastic bottle, and trust me I enjoy the blue flavor, but it's just packed with sugar… while some sports drinks can be great for excruitiating and long workouts because of the electrolytes, you're better off with a more natural choice -- ones that aren't filled with dyes, artificial flavors and tons of sugar. How is that REALLY helping your body recover? If you put toxins in, expect a toxic result! Replenishing your blood sugar: In order to do this you need carbs. There are 17 grams of carbs in each serving of Shakeology, which when taken with protein post-workout, can both replenish your body and keep you satisfied, so you don't overeat or suffer through that "I'm starving" feeling, which can lead to unhealthy meal choices.
Tip: Recovering with a shake that has protein, amino acids, and electrolytes (Brawndo, its what plants crave… ;-) If anyone has seen Idiocracy) is going to replenish your body much faster and much more efficient than our beloved Gatorade… you're not 5, you don't need a juice every time you run on the playground. The final two pieces of the recovery puzzle are electrolytes (specifically potassium, sodium, magnesium, and chloride) and water, all of which you lose when you sweat. The magnesium, sodium, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes in Shakeology will boost your electrolytes, and if you want to get even more, make your shake with coconut water.
4. Your workout is your weekend alibi: "Well I worked out for an hour and a half on Friday, so this weekend I really deserve to eat whatever I want… I mean I burned off so much!" Mhhmmmm girlfriend, been there DONE that! I'm a wiz at justification… I can justify why brownies are good for you. Ready? Here it goes:
Brownies have cocoa. Cocoa is a plant. Plants are veggies. Brownies are veggies. Veggies are good for you. Therefor brownies are not AS bad as we think.
I can pretty much do that with about anything, and guess what? SO CAN YOU. We have a powerful mind that fits things to how we want it to be.
"Well my thighs are like this because my mom…" "I can't workout because I have bad knees"
Cure yourself of excusitis!
Your excuses = the bullshit story you tell yourself to make yourself feel better. Guess what? You won't find your results if you make the same excuses.
Don't use your workout as an excuse to eat bad on the weekends! You worked your booty off, you sweated, grunted, and huffed your way through that workout, and NOW you're going to use an entire day, weekend, or whatever to sabotage it? It's called a yo yo diet for a reason! But please don't think I'm a nazi, I enjoy a cheat meal once and maybe sometimes twice a week… its all about balance.
Tip: Plan your cheat meal and stick to it. Earn it, it's a privilege not a right. What day is best for you? What do you want? What have you been craving? Have fun with it, but once its over, it's done!
5. You skip meals (and after workout snacks): You skip breakfast? I'm literally groaning and moaning over here… BREAK the FAST = breakfast. You sleep 6-8 hours (maybe) and your body desperately NEEDS two things :
1. WATER -- you have to hydrate your body to kick start your metabolism. If you want to lose weight or even look like a human being (and not an office drone) then drink some water. Your skin and body will thank you. And tons of it.
2. FOOD-- nutritionally dense food. I personally have Shakeology once in the morning and after a workout… if you're eating Jimmy Dean sausage patties, you're literally a human garbage disposal… fake food will hold your body hostage.
After workout snacks are GREAT for muscle repair… and I'm not sure about you, but after my recovery drink (Shakeology or protein) I am hungry about 30 minutes later. Your body just burned off a ton of energy (calories) so it NEEDS to be replenished. Here's a list of of pre-workout snacks you can munch on!
Tip: Set reminders on your phone when to eat and keep a list of healthy foods you can choose from already prepared.
6. You're not drinking water before, during and after your workout: I'll fess up on this one! I use to NEVER drink water during a workout, and I didn't realize how much it held me back from pushing harder. Do you ever see those guys and gals that carry JUGS of water? Well they have good reason. Water = FUEL and you need it. When my boyfriend realized I wasn't drinking water during my workouts, he was on my ass! Once I started to drink water (sips here and there, not massive chugs during cardio, hello cramps) I FELT the difference immediately. It's the difference between an ASS kicking workout and a workout where you could sit on your ass.
Tip: Keep a 32oz bottle with you at all times and remember to fill it up 2-3x a day (depending on your weight)
Alright workout and fitness junkies and those aspiring to jump on the crazy train, I hope this helps! Any suggestions, tips, advice or questions -- post below in the comments section!