Habits that Jeopardize Fitness

by Angela Yorke | February 9th, 2012 | Eating Tips

Working short exercise snippets into your daily routine is a good way to get fit without feeling as if you’re making a lot of effort. So is committing to fitness with better eating habits, good food choices, and exercising regularly. Yet, there are bad habits that, unwittingly adopted, can derail the trek to fitness.

The first one is familiar to most, where people allow themselves to become stuck doing the same workout for months on end and seeing diminishing results, which is discouraging. When a routine becomes boring, you might wind up working out less over time. If this were not rectified, then you would be cheating yourself out of better fitness. A rut is bad for fitness because it presents a diminished challenge for the body, which has become accustomed to the same intensity and duration of the routine. Additionally, a body stuck in a fitness rut becomes more injury-prone.

Thus, aim for variety when it comes to working out. For example, run on a different route or terrain, or further. You could also try joining a spin or dance class, or simply lifting heavier weights and/or with more repetitions.

Another bad habit is exercising on an empty stomach. Although the intention is to make the body burn more of its own fat stores, what actually happens is that muscles begin to be broken down for fuel after the body uses up all available blood sugar or glycogen.

This leads to a higher chance of sustaining an injury over time, and can actually have an adverse effect on workout quality, meaning you don’t perform as well as you should, as well as feeling tired and dizzy; therefore, it is advisable to have something light to eat 45-60 minutes before a workout.

Somewhat related to a workout rut is the tendency to just go through the motions during an exercise routine. You only obtain results if you make the requisite effort, so don’t cheat by taking it easy; maintain the form required, feel the burn, and know that it all pays off in the end.

Conversely, there are those who push themselves harder than their bodies are able to handle. This can result in injury, which will definitely push you off the fitness track. Taking proper care of yourself means that you will miss less workout days due to illness or injury.

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All health and fitness information is provided for educational purposes. Please consult with your physician before beginning any exercise regimen.