4 gym tips (15)

8 Tips to Maximize Results in the Gym

#1: Prioritize Sleep

Regularly not getting enough zzz’s may:

  • increase food cravings
  • slow recovery from workouts
  • compromise your ability to easily gain muscle or lose fat

Prioritize sleep as much as possible. A great goal would be getting a minimum of ~7 hours per night.

Running on ~5-6 hours of sleep or less? Consider skipping your workout and doubling down on good nutrition, steps, and getting to bed early.

New parent? We get it. Do your best in deciding when to push vs pull-back, based on how you feel.

“Want to lose muscle + gain fat? Easy, don’t sleep!” – Robb Wolf

#2: Lots of Protein

Whether you want to gain muscle, lose fat, hit new PRs, or just look your best, getting enough protein is key!

Current protein recommendations:

  • ~0.7 – 1.0 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight
  • Leaner? Aim closer to 1.0 grams per pound of body weight
  • Higher body fat? Aim closer to ~0.7-0.8 grams per pound of body weight

Example: 150-lb individual = ~105-150 grams of protein

Protein Ideas: eggs, egg whites, bison, ground beef, steak, chicken thighs, tofu, salmon, shrimp, greek yogurt

If you’re not tracking your food, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting a big serving of protein at all meals and snacks. Think about it this way: if you had ~4 ounces of meat at brekky, lunch, and dinner, that’s ~100g protein alone!

#3: Enough Food & Carbs

Being well-fed + well-recovered = bomb workouts, happy hormones, muscle gain, lift PRs, and better harmony with food, exercise, and your body.

~1200-1600 calories likely won’t cut it for those who love working out, lifting, and being active! (*if dieting, sometimes it be like that tho)

Just like a bank account or ATM, we want to be making deposits (eating at maintenance or in a surplus) more than we make withdrawals (eating in a deficit).

Constant dieting can lead to negative changes to your metabolism, hormones, thyroid, and menstrual cycle, which is exactly what we don’t want.

#4: Eat Regularly & Choose High Quality Foods

Snickers was spot-on when they created that “you’re not you when you’re hungry” series. Because we all know that nothing sucks more than trying to work out or lift heavy when you’re running on fumes. We have to eat the food!

Having trouble eating enough? Try one of these strategies:

  • set alarms to remind you to eat
  • get in a bigggg breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • high-protein morning/afternoon snacks
  • prioritize mostly real whole foods
  • eat less fast food, soda, candy
  • eat a fruit and veggie at most meals
  • get in lots of high-fiber foods

*PS: coffee is not a meal and neither are protein bars (:

#5: Balanced Meals

Eating healthy doesn’t have to be stressful or time-consuming. Keep it simple, let it be easy!

For the majority of meals, aim for protein, carbs, fat, fruit, and veggie. We also suggest aiming for lots of high-fiber food. Our goal should be to eat ~25-30 grams of fiber every day. Fruits + veggies = high fiber. If you’re struggling with fiber, you’re likely slacking on eating plants!

High Fiber Food Ideas: fruit, berries, veggies, oats, whole grains, lentils, beans, chickpeas, sweet potato

Well-Rounded Meal Examples:

  • chicken thighs, rice, avocado, broccoli, berries
  • steak, potatoes, EVOO, salad, blueberries
  • eggs, bacon, sweet potatoes, kale, banana

#6: Hydration & Booze

You should aim to drink at least 1/2 of your body weight (lbs) in ounces of water each day.

So, for example, if you weigh 130 lbs, you should be chugging at least 65-80 ounces. On top of that, we’re looking to add ~10-15 ounces for every hour of exercise, especially when it’s hot. Oh and don’t forget to add electrolytes to your water and add salt to your food! We want to absorb all of that water effectively!

As far as alcohol, it can definitely be fun, but keep in mind it can cause negative changes to metabolism, hormone levels, mood, sleep, etc.

If focusing on fat loss/improving body comp, it might be helpful to minimize alcohol a little more during those seasons of life.

#7: Steps/NEAT

Regular movement supports better digestion, heart and mental health, faster recovery from workouts, and makes it easier to maintain or change body weight.

We recommend maintaining a minimum step goal of ~7,000-8,000 steps/per day. You can easily track steps via your smartphone or watch (Garmin, Apple, etc).

Tips for getting more steps:

  • get up every hour to walk around
  • take a 10 min walk after each meal
  • walk around the gym between lift sets
  • park farther away when “out + about”
  • walk when on the phone or scrolling IG
  • invest in a tiny treadmill for home or under your desk (they’re amazing!)

#8: Rest Days = Best Days

Recovery = the secret sauceee to easily gaining muscle, losing body fat, improving body comp, etc.

Your body may struggle to change how you want it to if it doesn’t get enough downtime to actually recover and do so. A great goal might be to take 1-2 rest days per week.

Good programming (like Paragon) will maximize your return on investment in terms of time and energy in the gym. Doing “more” isn’t always better. You can only adapt what you can recover from.

Extra lifting, workouts, or cardio may just increase hunger, and squash recovery, not to mention make it take longer to get where you’re trying to go.

Need a Good Program to Follow?

@paragontrainingmethods = the life-changing workouts, coaching, + online fitness community you’ve been searching for to help you build muscle, achieve your goals, and look/feel your best.

Whether your goal is:

  • to run AND lift
  • workout 3 days per week
  • lift from home
  • enjoy things you love (CrossFit, Olympic lifting, Peloton)
  • or just look/feel your best

We have fun and effective remote workouts that will get you there!

Our Paragon workouts are evidence-based and backed by science. You can choose to work out for 30, 45, 60, or 90 minutes per day. We have workouts for all goals and levels of lifting experience. As well as the option to still include things you love (whether that’s running, Olympic Lifting, or riding your Peloton).

Click here to read more about our Paragon workouts!

LCK and Bryan from Paragon Training Methods

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“They say the best companies from solving a problem. Paragon Training Methods started w/ solving mine.”

– Paragon Founder, LCK 

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