The pre-workout routine is one of the most important things you’re probably overlooking.
There’s a good chance you rush to the gym without giving much thought at all into properly preparing for your workout.
I used to do it a lot.
I get it.
We’re all busy and lucky to even have the time to get to the gym and now I’m telling you to devote more time to it.
The thing is that it doesn’t need to take up a ton of extra time.
20 or 30 minutes spent preparing for the gym will make a huge difference in the quality of your workouts.
Isn’t that worth it to you? A few extra minutes for better results?
Of course it is.
Most people learn how to work out to an extent, but few learn how to prepare for a workout.
I’m going to help you with that.
I’ve broken the whole process down into 5 simple stages that will lead you on the path to perfection. This process will help you have a perfect (or near) workout every single time.
Stage 1- planning
It’s important to plan your workout to the extent possible.
Where are you going to work out?
What body part are you going to train?
What time do you want to go to the gym?
These are all questions that should be answered prior to hitting the gym.
It’s always good to have a plan.
When you have a set time and plan for the gym, it helps your mind to prepare ahead of time and get into the zone.
This doesn’t need to be a big thing and shouldn’t take more than a minute or two.
At some point in the beginning of the day, just answer these questions in your head and pick a time you want to get to the gym.
Once you pick that time, stick with it!
Don’t procrastinate and get to the gym two hours late.
It’ll throw you off and interfere with your workout.
Stage 2- fuel
By fuel, I mean your pre-workout nutrition and meal.
Unless you train fasted, you should have a planned pre-workout meal to eat before you hit the gym.
Ideally, it should be eaten about an hour to an hour and half before the gym depending on the meal.
If you prefer a small meal that digests quickly, it can be eaten much closer to your workout.
I’m personally not into eating a huge meal before I work out, but I know many people that are.
You have to try a few things to figure out what will work best for you.
The general blueprint to follow with a pre-workout meal is some quick digesting protein, some quick or slow digesting carbs and some fat.
Keep it simple.
Stage 3- supplements
This might not apply to you if you don’t take any supplements before you train.
A lot of people take pre-workout powders or some type of nitric oxide booster.
After your meal has digested, you’re almost ready to hit the gym.
Most pre-workout powders and supplements can be taken immediately before you train and don’t require much time to digest.
Currently, I drink BCAA’s on the way to the gym and that’s really it as far as supplements go.
I do consider coffee a supplement of sort showever, and I drink a cup or two of it currently before the gym helps me a lot.
I’ve tried a good amount of pre-workout powders over the years, but I always seem to come back to just coffee.
Just something about it seems to work the best for focus and energy.
Stage 4- mental preparation
This is a very important step that a lot of people skip.
You have to get into the right state of mind before you get to the gym.
If your mind is focused on other things, you’re going to be distracted.
This is the pump-up stage where you get yourself amped to get in there and crush it.
I usually take a few minutes to watch some motivational bodybuilding videos or listen to some of my favorite music.
I can do it for a while, but it just needs to be quick enough to get you ready to lift.
Most of the time, I’m doing this on the way to the gym.
Blaring music in my car on the ride so that the second I get to the gym, I’m ready to go.
Everyone is different when it comes to getting pumped up but figure out what it takes and do that every single time.
I know a dude that listens to Adele to get emotional before the gym. Whatever it takes baby!
Stage 5- gear up
The final stage is just to make sure you have everything you need for the gym.
Before you leave the house, go over a mental check list in your head.
Do you have your headphones? Belt? Wraps? All of it.
Make sure you don’t get to the gym and have to immediately go back home because you forgot something.
It’ll kill your mood and your workout will suffer.
Make sure you have every single thing you need or will need from the beginning of the workout to the end.
I leave most of the gear I use in my gym bag because I know that I’ll always have it with me.
Maybe I won’t need my wraps that day, but I’ll have it in case I do.
You never know.
It’s best to be prepared.
Simple yet powerful
I think you’ll agree that these 5 stages won’t cost you a ton of extra time.
Most time will probably be waiting for the pre-workout meal to digest, but you can get around that with a smaller meal.
No reason you shouldn’t be able to follow these stages.
They can be changed or adapted to fit your schedule or preferences.
You need to make the pre-workout routine your own.
It has to be a deeply personal thing that gets you ready for the gym.
Once you get your routine down, do it the same way every single time.
Don’t deviate unless you’re trying to make it better.
Overtime, you’ll find your mind and body are able to get into the right mode quickly the more you do this routine.
You’ll notice a big difference in the quality of your workouts.
P.S. What does your current pre-workout routine look like? I’d love to hear it below!