It’s not always about speed
1 of 4All photos
Lauren sees a lot of people "going through repetitions way too quickly." Blazing through your reps means you're not working through the full range of motion of your muscles and joints. You're often sacrificing form for speed. The simple fix is slow it down, focus on the quality of your movement, and check your form. in the mirror. If you're not sure you're doing an exercise correctly, check with the front desk to find the trainer on the floor. There should be a trainer hanging out on the gym floor, helping gym patrons with questions on form and how to work certain machines.
One set is never enough
2 of 4All photos
Lauren also comes across gym goers short-changing themselves and only doing one set of an exercise. Research has shown that doing two to three sets of an exercise will make you over 40 percent stronger than just doing one. Lauren suggests you "shoot for at least two to four sets of any exercise." The fix just might be to push yourself a little bit harder. You're tougher than you think!
You do the same old, same old
3 of 4All photos
Maybe it's because we are creatures of habit, but Lauren has noticed a fair bit of gym folks always doing the same routine. This is a no-no, because it "leads to plateau, loss of interest, lack of results — we're talking weight training as well as steady state cardio . . . mix it up people!" If your routine is stale, take a group class to try new things. Spinning is great if you're a treadmill addict — intervals are staple in indoor cycling classes so goodbye steady state cardio. Sculpting classes will work muscles you never knew you had. Check out FitSugar’s downloadable and printable workouts for both cardio and strength training. These workouts will surely help you freshen up your routine.
You’re not posture perfect
4 of 4All photos
"Hunched over posture while exercising is also really common" according to Lauren. And all this hunching can lead to injury and pain. To correct the problem, she suggests people work on strengthening their upper backs with rowing exercises and stretching their chests, too. Lauren also is a big fan of core work to help strengthen the lower back. Planks are a great way to work the abs and the supporting back muscles simultaneously. So while you're refreshing your stale routine, be sure to throw some back strengthening moves into your workout.