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To-Do List: 5 Crucial Pre-Workout Steps To Ensure Success In The Weight Room

These steps are markers I have used in the past that when achieved, my workout quality has always been higher.

1. Hydration

Muscle tissue expansion and joint fluidity are highly dependent on being hydrated, I would argue working out with an under-hydrated body brings out more negatives than positives overall. Stop pounding caffeine unless your water intake is there. An easy way to get more water is by putting a glass by your nightstand before bedtime and slamming it down right when you wake up.

2. Sleep

Much like hydration, sleep could be considered the highest priority for a quality workout. I would say what is more important is a consistent schedule of sleeping versus the amount. Sleep patterns that are varied versus a constant pattern with maybe less overall sleep have produced higher-quality workouts for me in the past. Focus on getting to bed at the same time every night to create the pattern.

3. Nutrition

Overall, you should eat high-quality food regardless of diet preferences. Planning out your food prior to a lifting or cardio session can make all the difference in the world in terms of having usable energy for that workout. My favorites recently are hashbrowns with eggs ( 1.5+ hours prior), candy ( 30 minutes prior to a lift ), bagel with peanut butter (an hour before lift ), pineapple, or any fruit in large quantities ( 1 hour before a run). Each of these has its place, start tracking to see what works for YOU and what doesn't. Again, highly dependent on the type of workout I'm doing and WHEN I'm doing it ( morning or night ).

4. Time to Finish

Stop putting your health aside for bullshit. Make sure you have ample time to do what you want in the gym because putting a workout on the back burner to hang with friends catches up the more you opt out of the former. This changes drastically depending on the variables of your workout, but always make time for warmup-workout-recovery. When you skip the warmup or recovery because of social activties, you will drag ass or worse get injured. If this means less working sets, so be it.

5. Have a Plan

No plan is the worst because a man with no plan has nowhere to look to for growth! Any basic guidelines to a workout is better than nothing. Show up with a plan, track your rest time and actually see improvements. When you have a plan, you stop guessing about improvement and can look at the evidence of work YOU did.

This is all subjective, do what works for you.

Happy Lifting.

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