trainer with clipboard standing in a bright gymWhen it comes to the gym, there’s a lot of things you’re doing right. You sweat, lunge, squat and run your heart out. And face it—the fact that you show up day after day is better than most. So, good for you! You’re well on your way to the fittest, healthiest bod you’ve ever had. Want to make your progress go even faster? Then it’s time to put strategy back in your workout plan, because without it, you’re just wasting precious time.

For many, when they hit the gym, their priority is the same: get in, get out and do it as fast as possible! Who has more than an hour to hour and a half to devote to a workout anyways? So, what’s your plan? How will you stay in motion during your weight lifting session without veering off track? The trick is, being proactive about what you’re working out—and when—while deterring away from the many distractions at the gym.

Distractions at a Glance

Who said that staying focused was easy in the weight room? True, it seems to be easier when you’re taking a spin class, or trying out that new yoga instructors unique blend of Tai Chi and meditation based stretches, but when you’re on your own, you’ve got to make the most of it! Staying focused on your toning, strength or endurance-based goals requires a similar technique that staying on task at work requires: limit the gossip, keep your eye on the prize, and go for short and intense periods of work (as opposed to long, drawn out sessions where you’re likely to lose your focus!)

Do you have friends that you meet at the gym for your daily workout, or perhaps just regular gym-goers who always like to chat with you about their relationships, children and career? Keep the chit-chat to a minimum, and limit the breaks you do take. Too many rips to the water fountain can actually affect your drive and focus for ‘keeping your head in the game,’ ‘causing you to detach from your workout and altogether skip out on your upper body workout, itself.

Be the (Wo)Man With a PlanYoung woman talking to her fitness trainer

When it comes to working out your body, do you really know what’s best? Even more importantly, do you know what’s worst for you? One of the biggest time wasters is not just going into the weight room without a plan, but going into the weight room without having a clue as to how weights work! Talk to a personal trainer read fitness magazines (including this blog!) and seek out advice from your workout buddies that know what the leg press, bicep curls and sprints really do for you. Knowledge is power, and strategy is key…especially when you want to get toned abs, eliminate your love handles, and get that ‘sexy back’, back! Learn each machine and what it can do for you. That way, you’ll make the very most of every minute that you’re sweating, lunging and squatting your way to excellent health (and a body to kill for!)