Top 14 Exercise Time-Wasters to Trim


We all know that fitting in a workout isn’t always easy. Between jobs, kids, spouses, friends and downtime, it can be tough to work up the motivation to get yourself moving. So when you do hit the gym, your number one priority should be taking full advantage of the time you have there.

While your fitness efforts may be paying off when you look in the mirror, chances are you could be getting the same if not better results in a shorter amount of time if you cut out exercise time-wasters. Here are the top five to trim from your routine.

Based on my informal poll of managers across various organizations, you may never have heard yourself say these words. In a recent national poll, more than 90 percent of managers admitted that they wasted time in carrying out their job responsibilities. Time is easy to waste, especially if you are not highly-focused on its passage. Benjamin Franklin wrote, “You may delay, but time will not.” The problem with time is that it keeps on ticking away, whether you notice it or not.

That great philosopher, Dr. Seuss, wrote, “How did it get so late, so soon? It’s night before it’s afternoon. My goodness, how the time has flewn! How did it get so late, so soon?”

We’ve all done it. We give ourselves an hour to get in a workout, then end up wasting nearly half of it running an errand or two, getting dressed at the gym, chatting with acquaintances we bump into along the way. Even with the best intentions, you can sidetrack your progress if you don’t make good use of your time. Think you might be frittering away precious fitness time? Check out what three fitness experts identified as the top 14 fitness time-wasters, and see where you can improve.

1. Changing Clothes at the Gym.

Dressing at the gym can be a big time-waster. Change before leaving work or the house and you’re less likely to change your mind about working out once you hop into the car, Trese suggests. You’re also less likely to get into a conversation in the locker room that could shave 10 minutes off your workout.”Some people even go to the extreme where they wear their workout clothes to bed so they can just get up and go,” says Trese.

If you don’t like the idea of sleeping in shorts and T-shirt, try laying out your workout clothes the night before to save time in the morning.

2. Completing an excess of reps

It may appear as though doing 20, 40 or 60 reps on a weight machine is a great thought, however you can show signs of improvement comes about faster in the event that you simply expand the weight you’re utilizing. When you’re utilizing the best possible measure of weight. You shouldn’t have the ability to do that numerous reps. anyplace from eight to 15 reps is standard for general muscle molding. When you sense that you could accomplish more, include weight.

3. Waiting until Afternoon to Work Out.

With determination, it’s possible for late risers to fit in regular afternoon fitness sessions. But there’s no question that people who work out in the mornings are more likely to stick to their routines, Trese says. There’s less time to make excuses, and fewer things to get in the way of a workout.

If you promise yourself a 4:30 p.m. walk, it’s much more likely something will come up, Trese says. Before you know it, it’s 5:30, and you’ve missed your window. Waiting until late in the day, “is setting you up for a downward spiral,” she says.

4. Isolating Muscle Groups.

How can you fit in separate exercises for your biceps, triceps, deltoids and lats when you only have 30 minutes to work out? For body-builders, concentrating on two or three muscle groups per session might be fine, but this doesn’t work for the average person.

There’s not enough time to get to all the muscle groups in three 30-minute sessions a week.Instead, says Pillarella, choose exercises like squats and push-ups that target several muscle groups at once. You’ll get a better workout in less time and you’ll also be training more functionally (mimicking the way you use your body in daily life).

5. Utilizing the wrong structure

Regardless of what amount of time you use doing activities and what amount of strength you push while you’re at them, you’re squandering your time when you’re doing the moves inaccurately. In the event that you don’t have the right structure. You could be harming or straining your muscles and you’re likely not getting the profits you think you are. Do some examination online and watch a couple of movies to take in the best possible routines, or approach a mentor at your training center for a demo.

6. Resting Too Long.

The machine you want to use is occupied, so you grab a towel, get a drink of water, run to the bathroom and the next thing you know, 10 minutes have passed. To avoid such time-wasting, rest only 30 to 90 seconds between strength exercises, says Comana. To maximize time, alternate a set of exercises for your biceps with a set for triceps, he says. That allows you to shorten the rest interval in between  while one muscle group is working, the opposing group is getting active recovery.

7. Watching TV or Reading.

“People tend to get on cardio equipment and think they’re paying the piper, but they’re so into their book they’re wasting precious caloric time,” says Pillarella. The bottom line is that when you’re focused on other things, your workout suffers, she says. You can walk at a 4 mph pace for 45 minutes and burn 300 to 400 calories, says Pillarella. But you could get the same calorie burn in 20 to 25 minutes doing intervals (running or walking as fast as you can for a minute or two) every 90 seconds.

8. Talking with companions

The friend framework is an incredible approach to stay inspired, yet it’s vital to keep your standardizing to a base when you’re getting serious. You may not attain your most extreme cardio potential when you’re attempting to refrain from speaking to inform your buddy concerning your most recent life happenings. Separate the talk to warm-ups and cool-downs.

9. Getting Stuck in a Rut.

Muscles have memory, says Pillarella. They adapt, they adjust and our bodies plateau.”If you always use the same piece of equipment, your body will become adept at that type of exercise,” she says. Instead, mix it up.

“If you always use the treadmill, get on the bike,” Lockhart suggests.

“If you always work at the same pace, practice doing intervals shorter surges to build your upper-end capacity. It’ll jog the body’s systems make your body wake up and have to regroup.” To add intervals, increase incline or speed for short periods during cardio exercise, says Trese. With your strength routine, change the order of the exercises or rotate from machines to free weights.

“With more versatility, your muscles won’t be prepared and your body will not automatically know how to respond,” Trese says. This will keep things fresh for your mind, too, she says, “making workout routines less boring.”Lockhart advises varying your exercise rogram every six to eight weeks if you’re working out consistently. This is enough time for the body to benefit from the routine without getting complacent.

10. Being Too Social.

“Social support is great,” says Trese. “Knowing that a familiar face will be there at the same time” can keep you going with your exercise regimen. “But you don’t want to make it just a social hour.” When walking on treadmills with a companion, Lockhart suggests agreeing to chat during the warm-up and cool-down, but to stay quiet and commit to pushing yourself for the time in between.”Work at an intensity that burns significant calories and is too high to carry on a full-blown conversation,” Lockhart suggests. When you work out with a friend or friends, set some rules first to be sure everyone stays on track with time, Trese advises. Try doing 8 to 10 exercises in 30 minutes, and resting no longer than a minute between exercises.

11. Getting an excessive amount of rest

It’s actual that your muscles might as well get a bit of rest among extreme workouts, however sitting still on the machine or remaining around the water wellspring isn’t finishing you any favors. Rather, Jennifer Beaton, VP of fitness for Bay Club, a driver of extravagance sports clubs and games resorts in California, prescribes differentiating your activities into muscle-particular moves. While you do a set for one muscle aggregate, your different assemblies are resting. Then again, do cardio in the middle of two blaze more calories and advertise muscle recuperation.

12. Using Bad Form.

Don’t just do the exercise; do it right, says Fabio Comana, MA, MS, certification and exam development manager for the American Council on Exercise. Improper exercise technique not only poses a greater risk of injury to muscles and joints, it also wastes your time. You may be thinking you’re strengthening one muscle when in fact you are straining another or stressing a joint. For example, doing bicep curls with your knees hyper-extended and your back muscles shortened could do more harm to your knees and back than good to your arms.

13. Failing to Plan.

If you haven’t been this person, you’ve seen her wandering from machine to machine with the 100-yard stare of someone whose mind is elsewhere. It happens all the time, says Lockhart. You get to the weight room and float around until you find an open machine. Then your time is over, and you’ve only gotten through three or four exercises. “Think about what you’re going to do in advance, then stick with it,” says Lockhart.

 “If it’s cardio, then get on the treadmill or bike and focus. Throw in some two-minute intervals.”For weight training, if you’re not working with a trainer, become your own. “Write a list of six or eight exercises (for different muscle groups) that you are going to accomplish in the given time,” Lockhart says. “When you have tasks, you get a better workout.”

14. Spinning Your Wheels.

When it comes to strength training, doing too many repetitions with lighter weights equals wasting time. “When we’re trying to build strength and build muscles, we want to attack as many muscle fibers as possible,” explains sports conditioning coach Fiona Lockhart. That means upping the weight and  decreasing the reps: “Fifty biceps curls might build muscular endurance but you’re not going to build the strength you’re looking for,” Lockhart says.

Of course, it also takes a lot more time to do 50 reps with light weights than 10 to 15 reps with more weight. A good rule of thumb: If you’re able to do more than 15 repetitions of an exercise, it’s time to increase the weight, Lockhart says.

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