How to Not Waste Your Time at the Gym

I Fucking Love Fitness
Smile (or not)! Shameless gym-selfie time. I took this picture to write about how weak I got because of not being consistent with my weightlifting. I was struggling with 24kg kettlebells. Sigh.

Summer is over and fall is officially here. To me this means saying goodbye to my lazy summer ways and welcome with open arms: new projects, new contracts, back to hardcore workouts at the gym, absolute commitment and no excuses whatsoever. I’ve been mentally preparing myself for the craziness that is coming ahead, which starts the next week so this means I don’t have much time to finish my new obsession on Netflix: Battlestar Galactica (best TV show ever, by the way).

I live by the cliché, work hard, play harder because even though work  sometimes drives me crazy, I love it! I know if I can get all my shit done quickly and efficiently, I can still live life to the fullest and don’t have to make any major sacrifices. I guess I’m lucky to have a career I’m passionate about and even though it’s flexible, a busy schedule means major commitment, careful planning and knowing what my priorities are. I do spend more time in the gym in the fall since the weather isn’t deal for outdoor workouts and frequent bike rides but my workouts are shorter and more efficient yet they are still as effective and beneficial.

How to Not Waste Your Time at the Gym:

  • If your friends distract you in any way, do NOT workout with them. Don’t feel bad— you need to get your shit done and so do they. Friends are allowed to ignore each other at the gym.
  • In fact, you are allowed to ignore everyone at the gym. Just throw on your headphones and your music doesn’t even have to be on but as long as no one is talking to you, it’s working! And no, it’s NOT rude. You need to get your shit done, remember?
  • If you are talking to someone at the gym, do not talk about work or life. Only talk about workout and fitness related topics. The gym isn’t time to talk about babies or shoes… it’s time to talk about beastmode-y stuff (and yes, you are allowed to rant about the smelly B.O. coming from the treadmill area).
  • Create a complete workout plan that not only includes what you are going to do but how long you are going to do it for. Keep your eye on the clock, stick with the plan and get out of there by your pre-determined time. You’ll be surprised at how much harder and faster you will work out if you have a goal in mind.
  • Or schedule a massage right afterwards like I sometimes do. You don’t want to miss that massage, huh? Then stop slacking off at the gym!
  • Take a class so you don’t have to plan a workout and so you will know how long you will be working out since the class length is always pre-determined.
  • Take as little breaks as possible in between sets and exercises to keep your heart rate up. Unless you are a body builder, split-training or weight lifting with long breaks in between each set isn’t beneficial to you. Waste. Of. Time.
  • Instead, do full body intervals with a combination of everything (weights, sprints, plyometrics, etc). Note, if you don’t know what you’re doing, hire a trainer.
  • AMRAP. As many rounds as possible. A couple of months ago, I discovered how hard I push doing AMRAPs because I always set ridiculous goals for myself and usually meet them. One of my favorites is a 12 minute AMRAP of 5 Clean + Press + Front Squat + 15 Hollow Rocks (or some other core exercise).
  • If you do need to take breaks, make them productive breaks. Jog on the spot, do some mobility exercises, etc. I love to stretch my hip flexors, ITB and calves in between sets when I’m lifting heavy and need more rest.
  • Do compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups along with high intensity cardio for the most efficient and fat-blasting workout in the shortest amount of time.
  • Don’t take your cellphone with you. Oops.
  • Don’t take shameless gym-selfies. Oops. Guilty.

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