5 Tip Checklist for Getting Results in the Gym

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Hi everyone! We get caught up in the exercise without thinking of the other aspects and requirements that our body needs to make progress.  This may be a refresher article for some, but a refresher is always nice.

Starting a workout routine is the hardest step. Getting your foot into a gym is usually the first step. If you are anti-gym and would prefer to workout at home like Mark Sisson speaks of, that's fine too.

If you don't need anymore advice than what equipment to use for the best overall strength, mobility and the ability to burn fat and create muscle, look no further than kettlebells. One kettlebell can serve as your entire "gym" if you need it to be!

If you don't sign up to join a gym community, you are missing an opportunity to meet great, motivated and dedicated people.

Not only are the people you meet going to become a valuable resource for your personal motivation, they could become significant others or lifetime friends. My gym, LA Fitness, feels like a small village of people that love to exercise and talk about anything related. This is one place where I feel 100% comfortable being a modern caveman, running around in my barefoot shoes, jumping and sprinting to the water fountain.

Now you're ready to move on to the actual tips.

Protein shakes contain amino acids, which aids mental performance and promotes fat loss.

  • Get Enough Carbs, Fat, Protein & Water In Your Diet! - It's easy to forget the importance of carbohydrates since they are not as abundant in the Paleo world as normal mainstream diets.
  • Robb Wolf's podcast has supported consuming rice to supplement the paleo diet and get a sufficient amount of carbs, especially if you are someone who is frequently exercising. 
  • Without consuming enough carbohydrates, your glycogen levels will not top-out, therefore preventing muscle growth and recovery. You can lose fat quicker by cutting your carb intake significantly, but is not recommended for a long period of time.
  • Understand that you cannot spot-target fat loss - Lets face it, we would all love to people able to pick and choose where we want to eliminate fat. Our chins, stomachs and legs are common places where people assume they can just magically eliminate fat. However, your body is a unit, meaning it operates and performs together.
  • Doing 100 sit-ups a day may build abdominal muscles (I recommend leg lifts to prevent back pain)but will not help you lose belly fat any quicker than doing sprints.
  • Stay Consistent With Your Exercise Routine -  I could write an entire book on the importance of staying consistent with your routine. You shouldn't skip more than 3 days in a row from exercise, unless you have extreme muscle soreness and are trying to prevent or recover from an injury. In that case you should pay close attention to the next 2 tips. 
  • Supplement Your Paleo Diet - Your diet should be very nutritious already with abundant quantities of lean meat, fresh fruit, vegetables and nuts, but supplementation is important for those wanting to have an edge. You can get results without supplements, but they are a way to get pure sources of nutrients such as protein and amino acids that your body needs to perform at a higher intensity and recover faster. Supplements are a way to get these pure nutrients without having to consume extra calories or carry a piece of steak in your pocket during your workout.
  • Know Your Personal Limits - I have seen people get carried out of the gym on stretchers because they didn't listen to their body. Freak accidents happen, but most injuries and accidents when exercising can be prevented by listening to your body. When first starting out, understand that the amount of weight you are lifting does not matter. You must first develop a level of comfort when using free weights such as dumbbells. It may take even longer to get comfortable using kettle bells. Don't be the guy or girl who is concerned about being able to lift a certain amount of weight, I'm more concerned that you are not hurting yourself and are using proper form to perform the exercise.
  • Bonus Tip  - Don't forget to make exercise and your Paleo lifestyle fun! Keeping a positive outlook towards your health is the best way to be successful. If I was miserable going to the gym and hanging out with my support group and eating healthy, I simply wouldn't do it. Have fun, keep going, don't give up, increase the weight this week and smile! You can accomplish your goals. Keep them realistic.
Good luck to you all on your training! There is always room for improvement.
 
P.S. - Ask around for help when needing an extra hand in the gym. Don't hurt yourself, it will make you angry and set you back for longer than you think. Also, set goals for this week, month and year. Attaining one end goal is near impossible without having checkpoints along the way!