Should you eat before or after exercising? Are you taking too much supplements? When to rest? Find out the answers to the most frequently asked questions!

While we all have pre-workout rituals, there are certain things to avoid if you want your performance to be profitable. Know what not to do and what to do prior to your routine.

Do you really know what to do before exercise to get the most benefits? Although almost all athletes are very confident about this issue, some habits may not be as fruitful as they think…

Before going to the gym or training at home, keep the following warnings in mind so that you are not in the worst condition and can take advantage of your full potential. In addition, they will also help you reduce the risk of injuries and other physical and health problems in general.

Do’s and don’ts when exercising

Whether you are a seasoned athlete or an amateur, you may want to review this list. We present you 5 things you should not do before exercising and which ones you can replace them with.

  1. Sleep before exercise

Obviously you want to be rested prior to training. However, when you abuse and sleep excessively before a physical work session, you may be hampering your performance.

According to the experts on the WebMD site, when you sleep for more than 30 minutes, the body enters a state of deep sleep, just as it does when you go to bed at night. A nap that lasts longer than 30 minutes will only make you feel more groggy and exhausted than before you took it.

If you think a nap is necessary before exercise, be sure to set an alarm for 15-20 minutes. In this way, you will have time to rest your eyes and body, but you will not trick the mind into thinking that it is time to rest for a long time.

  1. Stretches

When you were younger, gym teachers probably told you to make sure you stretch your muscles well before doing any vigorous activity. However, experts now say that stretching before training can actually do you more harm than good.

According to research published by the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, static stretching before exercise not only decreases muscle strength, but also affects power and reaction.

Warm up your muscles by moving them in one way or another, avoiding static stretching exercises completely. Try things like running on site, doing jumping jacks, or riding a stationary bike to slowly warm your muscles.

Save static stretches for after training. These will be most beneficial once you’ve loosened your muscles to reduce post-exercise pain and lower your risk of certain injuries, according to a study published by the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

  1. High intensity interval training

High-intensity interval training varies the exercise requirement throughout each session. This type of training interrupts the natural breathing of the body through changes in the power of the intervals and the rest that is taken between them.

As if that weren’t enough, it also quickly decreases endurance and strength — something that is certainly not the goal before doing the main routine. This may even happen at the beginning of training.

What you should do is start your training session with some type of cardiovascular exercise. You don’t need to run from 0 to 100, as this would not be healthy either. Instead of doing high intensity workouts, vary with a bit of stationary cardio where the energy you use does not vary radically.

  1. Should you eat before or after exercising?

After eating, digestion takes place, as you are aware. What you may often not take into account is the amount of energy you need for this process. Looking at it from this point, possibly your mom was right when she asked you to rest before going swimming after a meal. So, should you eat before or after exercising?

When you try to exercise during the digestive process, you could be putting too much pressure on your body. This can cause stomach cramps and nausea. Such consequences are due to the fact that, as stated in a study published in The Journal of Nutrition, certain nutrients slow down gastric emptying.

Consider eating a healthy diet to give your body energy, especially before exercise. You know: try to incorporate easily digestible carbohydrates and not too much water; save fat and fiber for after training. In other words, eat foods like fruits, cereals, and yogurt and avoid sweet things.

Remember that many energy drinks can have a lot of sugar. You must look carefully at the labels and realize if the content of your favorite energy drink really helps you or, on the contrary, is hurting you.

  1. Take too many supplements

By getting in the habit of eating properly before exercise, you will get all the vitamins and minerals without the need for any supplements. However, if you decide to use them, it is best not to overdo it.

Taking too many “products” can lead to irregular heartbeats, nausea and anxiety, as well as other undesirable consequences for an athlete. On many occasions, taking supplements to give the body an extra boost when training does not offer good results, according to a study published by the journal Hospital Nutrition in 2015.

If you are going to use supplemental powders or pills, it is best to consult a nutritionist. This professional will know what you may need in particular and will tell you to what extent to take it and how to combine it with your diet.

Emphasize good habits before exercise

In summary, we can say that before exercise you must emphasize healthy habits that promote good rest and nutrition, adequate muscle preparation. And, in some cases, conscientious consumption of supplements.

With these bases, you will surely be able to perform more in each workout, which will lead to better results. Once again, remember that being guided by professionals of medicine and physical activity is always the best advice to prevent risks and achieve your goals.

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