Both rookies and fitness enthusiasts may have questions and doubts about the right training program to implement and the right diet to follow to boost performance and reach workout goals. For instance, should you eat before or after workout? Do long bouts of stretching help or should you skip it? In a sea of uncertainty, these five secret ways to step up your fitness game can help. Check them out!

  1. Eating Before Training: Yay or Nay?

Some people head to the gym to lose weight. Others want to improve their strength or performance. Depending on your objective, sometimes it’s hard to know whether you should or shouldn’t eat before training. It’s ideal to have a meal, or at least a snack, before a workout in order to give your body proper nutrients and energy. Physical activity performed in conditions of sugar deficiency can lead to tiredness and poor concentration. Yet, eating before training won’t help you get in shape. If your goal is to lose weight, skip the meals before the workout and try to always train on an empty stomach.

  1. Stretching Before Workout – A Not So Clever Idea

Stretching before training is a popular thing. Athletes do it. Personal trainers do it. So why shouldn’t you? It may seem odd, but according to sports doctors, there is no evidence that stretching reduces the risk of injury. Not only that, but according to the same doctors, this practice may even have a negative impact on your performance. Stretching reduces muscle stiffness, reducing the power of contractions, thus slowing you down. A study conducted by the University in Zagreb, Croatia, has even shown that static pre-workout stretching reduces muscle strength by 5,4%. Yet by reducing muscular contractions, stretching can be beneficial to beginners, at least up to some extent.

  1. Supplements: Think Outside The Box

If eating before training is not always beneficial, supplements can boost your energy while determining your body to use its own energy supplies (a.k.a. burn fatty tissue). There are dozens of pre-workout and post-workout supplements out there, but they are often expensive. That’s why thinking outside of the box helps. For instance, many micronutrients and vitamins present in specific sports formulas are also present in less expensive products designed to boost other body functions. Take vision supplements, for example. Vision supplements include a mix of vitamins A, E, and C, Ginkgo Biloba extracts, fish oil, and a series of other microelements that also enhance your eyesight while boosting your stamina and strength.

  1. Adapt Workout To Your Age

People tend to deny aging even when it comes to fitness. There are many 50-somethings and over who believe that training in their fifties as they would have in their twentieth is the way to go. But it isn’t. As we grow older, our cardiovascular system grows old too. And this happens even if you’ve been an athlete for all your life! That’s why it’s important to follow an appropriate training plan that considers your biological age. Adapt your efforts and customize your physical activity to not overload your heart.

  1. Don’t Try HIIT Just Because It’s Trendy

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is based on short but intense 30-second exercise sequences alternated by short recovery phases and it was touted to help busy people train for at least 150 minutes per week. This workout is very trendy nowadays and many personal trainers claim that even 30 minutes of HIIT per week suffice to keep you fit. But interval training isn’t always suitable for your body, schedule, and goals. The program is designed for people who are already fit and in pretty great health. HIIT can easily take its toll on your cardiovascular system if you’re not accustomed to physical activity; done sporadically, HIIT has no effect whatsoever on your fitness game and you’d better look elsewhere for a training program that is more adequate to your fitness level.