Three surprising factors that affect your workout

January 14, 2013

Jumping on home gym equipment can give you an exceptional cardio workout and help you be on your way to better overall health. TRUE Fitness has a line of cardio fitness equipment which keeps you comfortable and motivated with a virtual training coach for a total-body workout. Sugary snacks, low energy levels and skipping out on stretching are conditions that are known to lower the quality of your cardio workout. But what you may not know, is that there are other elements that may be affecting how you exercise. Take a look at these surprising factors that can really give your workout routine a boost:

We’re well aware that caffeine is a lifesaver when it comes to waking up. Turns out, a cup of joe can energize your workout as well! According to Shape magazine, the caffeine in coffee works to increase your endurance by changing how your muscles use energy.

“Studies have shown that caffeine mobilizes fat in your body so your muscles use it as fuel, instead of glycogen in your body,” explained Shape magazine. “That allows you to exercise longer, since your body doesn’t use the carbs you ate before your workout until later.”

However, make sure you don’t overdo it on the coffee. Try one small cup of coffee before you workout. Anymore than that, and you may be left feeling too full.

Cold hands
Studies are showing that having cooler hands can actually help women to exercise for a longer period of time. According to Stacy Sims, an exercise physiologist and nutrition scientist at Stanford University School of Medicine, those women who held a hand-cooling device during parts of their workout had significant improvements in exercise performance.

Sims explains this phenomenon by explaining holding a colder object slows the rate at which your body temperature rises. This way, you don’t store as much heat and are able to workout longer and more comfortably. If you’re not sure how to cool your hands off, try holding onto a cold water bottle while you’re exercising. This ensures you will stay hydrated and cool!

Having the right mental state before and during your workout can really make a difference in your progress. Instead of looking at the glass half empty and saying things like, “I’m too tired to workout,” tell yourself the benefits you’re gaining from your workout, whether it’s to accomplish your goals or simply to be healthier. Positive energy can give you that motivation you need to start and finish exercising. Woman’s Day suggested grabbing a workout buddy to support each other and provide positive feedback.