As a trainer, “what’s a good pre-workout” is one of the most common questions besides, “how can I lose this fat” followed by a point to either the inner thigh or the belly. Pre-workout is important, BUT I’m not talking about the pre-work you’re thinking. This post has NOTHING to do with something you consume prior to a workout in hopes that it will make you invincible in the gym. Instead it has everything to do with what you should be doing prior to your workout, you know, your Pre-workout.
Yes caffeine is nice before a workout, but what your body is really looking for is blood flow and an increase in heart rate. Too often when people show up for a workout they do exactly what they were doing before they arrived, sitting down. Unfortunately this does nothing to help the body prepare for what will happen in the next hour. Instead, your body goes from a phase of rest, to a spike in heart rate usually making people feel fatigued right off the bat. So what should we do to combat this workout fatigue? We must take (actually do) a pre-workout.
For those of you who wander around the gym instead of getting the body moving here are a few things you can do before class starts to get the body primed and ready to go.
1. Follow the instructions on the board that say:” Pre-warm up: 1,000m Row, 500m Ski, 50 cal. airdyne.” All you have to do is choose 1 of those 3 things. It doesn’t have to be done at full speed, but set a pace that is faster than a leisurely stroll, and get moving.
2. Stretch it out: Some of the stretches we do in class such as step throughs, lateral lunges, plank wave push ups, dive bombers, etc. are great not only for mobility work, but they also get the heart rate up a little bit. These stretches after a few minute on a rower or airdyne are perfect for getting the body ready to go.
3. Honestly, there is no third option. The two above are all you need in order to prep for class.
Before your next class, I hope to see you all doing 1 of those 2 things. Move around a bit on one of the machines and then go into some mobility/stretching work. Don’t just go through the motions though. Go through it with the intent that it will allow a better workout for you and for your body.