How to get more out of your workouts in less time.
We have all been there…walk into the gym, only to feel lost the second we step on that hard rubber flooring. Early in my training career, I experienced that feeling, more often than I would like to admit. Our time is our most valuable asset in life.
While I LOVE being in the gym and pushing my body to unknown heights, I also enjoy spending time with my family. I enjoy going to the beach with friends and embarking on long walks with my dog Beau. I am 100% positive most if not all of you feel the same way.
Over the years, I have wasted countless hours messing around in the gym, when I could have been enjoying other pleasures life has to offer. I am here today to shed some light on how you can learn from my mistakes, maximize your workouts, and get out of the gym in a timely manner so you can have more free time to do the activities you love most.
Here are three tips you can use to eliminate distractions and maximize your time in the gym.
1. Have a plan
No better way to start your workout than with a solid plan of attack. Create some sort of structure you can follow and assess over time. Some aspects of a workout to consider are:
- What is your warm up going to look like?
Do you have a way to assess your joint range of motion for that workout? Will you perform a Dynamic Warm Up before your strength circuits? What will that warm up look like?
- What mobility specific drills will you include in your workout?
Here is where you can target specific areas of the body you know you will be training that day and focus on increasing your range of motion.
- What functional patterns will you include in your strength circuits?
Utilizing compound movements that fit within the six main functional patterns will cut down on training time, while maximizing the gains you will receive over time.
- What accessory work will you include?
This is where you can add secondary movements into your workout routine that compliment your main functional patterns. This section of your workout can also include more of the six functional patterns (more on that in the second part of this article.)
- What cool down or decompression techniques are you using?
Your walk home from the gym is not a proper cool down. Active results come from active inputs. Plain and simple. If you are not focused on how you cool down from your workout, you are missing a huge piece of the puzzle when it comes to recovery.
2. Master the basics
As stated in the first point of this article, the six functional patterns are and always will be your go-to movements when you need to get in and out of the gym quickly. These compound movements include most if not all major muscle groups and pack some serious muscle building punch.
The six functional patterns include: the squat, the hinge, the lunge, the upper body push, the upper body pull, and the carry. Each pattern is not contained to one movement, but includes a variety of movements, which can only be limited by your imagination and creativity.
To learn more about the six functional patterns, please read my article Focus on Function.
3. Put your phone away
This one, while very obvious, may be the most difficult to actually perform. I know the text from your boyfriend or girlfriend is important, but I can almost guarantee the majority of messages you will receive will still be there at the end of your workout. That also goes for any Instagram post….and Facebook post, Tweet, TikTok, or any other distraction you may receive mid-set.
We have all heard the phrase “put first things first.” Well in this case, the first “thing” you should be prioritizing in the gym, is your body. Focus on using proper form. Focus on pushing yourself to the limit. Focus on making small improvements each and every day.
Bringing it all together.
That should be your main objective during your workouts. If you can get dialed in once you enter the gym, I can promise you, you will see better results in less time. Come to your workout with a plan and execute. Hit the major muscle groups by incorporating the six main functional patterns, and lastly, stay off your phone during your workout!
These three tips have helped me learn more about my body over the past few years than I ever did early in my training career. I am more in tune with my movement and therefore my body. I know you can be successful in the gym as well. Follow these three ways you can maximize your results in the gym, while maximizing your time outside the gym!