10 Secrets For Better Training Performance

May 10, 2016


As with most things in life, preparation is the key to better training performance during your workout. Taking a few moments to prepare your body will have a huge impact on your overall performance.

Training to a professional level requires strength, stamina, mental focus, willpower and technique, and this article gives 10 tips on taking your training to the next level.

1. Optimise Your Warm-Up Routine

Many people do not take full advantage of their warm-up routine before starting a training session. A few people will even skip it altogether and launch straight into high-intensity training. Failing to warm-up correctly can result in serious injury such as muscle tears, sprains and painful joints.

A good warm-up can also boost your training performance by around 20%. An effective warm-up routine consists of several stretches that loosen the muscles, lubricate the joints and mentally prepare you for what is ahead. Performing several sun salutations is a good way to stretch all the muscles in your body.

2. Set Your Goal Before You Start

Before beginning your training session, set a goal in your mind that you would like to achieve. It could be completing 10 sets of lunges or something simpler such as keeping your heart rate at a certain level.

Whatever you decide, having something to work towards will help you focus your mind and conserve your energy throughout the session. If you fail to reach your target, simply take a short breather and try again.

If you find that your strength or stamina is lacking during a session, try to identify the reason for your decreased performance. It could be poor diet, lack of sleep or muscle injury.

3. Learn About Proper Nutrition

Just as high performance cars need specialised fuel, your body needs the very best nourishment to perform at optimum level.

Those who are following a high-intensity workout regime need to consume far more calories than the average person. It is also essential to find the correct balance of carbohydrates, fat and protein.

If you do not have much experience with diet and nutrition, consult an expert for advice on meal preparation, portion size and essential vitamins and minerals.

A nutritionist or sports therapist will be able to advise you on exactly what types of food you should be consuming and how often.

4. Make The Most Of Your Workout

Instead of concentrating on your upper body for the first part of your workout and then switching to the lower body, why not try alternating between the two?

This will allow you to maximise your workout time and avoid having to rest between sets. After completing several sets of chin-ups, immediately move onto a set of deep leg lunges.

This helps you pack as many exercises into your workout as possible. You will also activate more muscles and burn off extra calories and fat.

For best results, alternate between pushing and pulling exercises as well as upper and lower body.


5. Incorporate Some Form Of Cardiovascular Training

Many athletes that are trying to bulk up and build muscle will avoid cardiovascular training as
they believe it inhibits muscle growth. Not only is this untrue, cardiovascular exercises are essential for a healthy heart, lungs and nervous system.

You can even incorporate weight training into your cardio workout by adding ankle weights or carrying a weighted backpack.

After warming up, spend at least 10 or 20 minutes performing some form of cardio training such as running, swimming, cycling or cross training. It will get the blood pumping and also make the next part of your workout more effective.

6. Test Your Mental Ability Whilst Training

Your physical and mental health are inextricably linked to one another, so it is essential to exercise them both during a workout. If you train with a personal trainer, ask them to fire questions at you during the tougher portions of your workout.

They could be simple questions regarding your job, or you could even get him to drill you on diet and nutrition. Engaging your mind whilst you are tired is a great way to sharpen your focus during your training session.

You may also surprise yourself as trying to perform simple mental exercises whilst your body is tired can be extremely difficult.

7. Plan Your Meals Around Your Workout

In order to fully optimise your time spent in training, you will need to plan your mealtimes accordingly. Eating before a workout will make you tired, sluggish and unable to perform at optimum level.

It can also be dangerous and will put extra pressure on your organs and digestive system. Consult with your nutritionist or personal trainer on the best times to eat before starting your workout.

A general rule is to eat at least two hours before a training session and to stick to small, light meals to aid digestion. Steamed fish or chicken with vegetables are ideal options.

8. Identify Your Weak Areas

Most people tend to focus their energy solely on their biceps, shoulders and chest during weight training.

This is extremely dangerous and can lead to muscle imbalances that can easily result in injury.

Enlist the help of an expert to help you identify any weak areas you might have that need tightening up.

Maintaining muscle symmetry is the goal of all serious athletes and is necessary if you wish to build muscle evenly throughout your body.

One of the easiest ways to do this is by working unilaterally. After every exercise, perform an alternate one to engage as many muscles as possible.

9. Recharge Your Body

Training is important for a healthy body and sharp mind, but even the mildest workout cannot be completed effectively if you have not slept well the night before.

A good sleep will recharge your mind and body and allow you to really test your physical limits during a training session.

Taking care of your muscles by having regular massages is also a great way to take care of yourself between workouts.

Foam rollers are extremely good for tired muscles and allow you to massage yourself at home. Lay the roller on the floor, and slowly move your body over it concentrating on your hamstrings, lower back, thighs and shoulders.

10. Never Push Yourself Too Hard

Trying to push your body to do more than what is comfortable will result in injury and several weeks spent in recovery.

Working out at medium intensity for five days a week is far more preferable to performing one or two high intensity workouts each week.

If you really want to train hard, ask your personal trainer to devise a program that will help you gradually build up your strength and stamina.

Once you have built a strong foundation, you can slowly build on it and begin to incorporate short bursts of high intensity training such as explosive lunges during your training sessions.

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