Exercise is any physical activity that is planned, structured and repetitive for the purpose of conditioning any part of your body or the entire body to maintain your fitness. Regular exercising keeps you active, young and in shape, helps you manage your weight, makes your lungs and heart stronger, and prevents a host of health problems. 

Many of you might call exercise as workouts also. While exercises and workouts are words that are used interchangeably, they can be different in meanings and context. 

Multiple or a set of different exercises make up a workout. A workout typically contains a series of exercises such as pushups, pullups, squats, and lunges. A typical workout session lasts for anywhere between 30 minutes to 1 hour or more and can be done at home, at the gym, or at a fitness center.

Exercising, commonly called working out, involves the movement of several muscles, joints, and body parts which are required to be coordinated and moved rhythmically in predetermined sets or patterns. Exercising helps you lose weight, reduce stress and anxiety, and elevates your mood.

5 Common Workout Mistakes You Should Avoid

Whether it is regular exercise or working out, any form of physical activity is good for your overall mental and physical health. However, diving straight into an advanced exercise programme (programmes that contain both light exercises and high-intensity workouts) is not encouraged. 

If you are a beginner, then your body is not prepared for the type of strenuous exercises involved in an advanced programme. As a result, engaging in an exercise programme with little foresight and planning can lead to burnout, frustration, and injury.

If you want to maximize the benefits of your workout, then you should start with a combination of motivation and correct information. 

Here are 5 common workout mistakes that you can easily avoid:

1. Skipping the warm-up

Muscles need time to adjust to the demands placed on them during exercise. So before hitting the gym or jumping into your intense regular cardio workout, you should first take a few minutes for a brisk walk, jog, cycle or do whatever you choose to, to prepare your body for strenuous activity. 

Warmed up muscles and ligaments greatly reduce the risk of muscle injury and increase the effectiveness of your workout.

2. Skipping the cool-down

Let your heart rate come close to the normal range before going to take a shower after the workout or before leaving the gym. 

This will reduce your risk of injury and stiffness since it will give you a few minutes to incorporate some relaxation and stretching movements into your routine.

3. Not stretching

Flexible muscles are far less likely to be pulled than stiff muscles. Stretch before a heavy workout or after your workout as warming down. Never stretch a muscle without warming up first, to further reduce your risk of injury. Regular stretching greatly increases your flexibility.

4. Waiting until you are thirsty to drink

Don’t wait until you feel thirsty because you are already dehydrated after your workout routine. Drink plenty of fluids before, during, and after your workout.

5. Being a weekend warrior

If you don’t exercise during the week and think that you will make it all up at the end of the week, then it will not help you to lose weight. 

For weight loss, it's more effective to sustain a moderate and regular workout routine with smaller gaps between workouts, than to have intense and long workouts focused only over the weekends and with longer gaps between workouts.

If you have decided to start working out regularly, then make sure you have the right information and you know all about the techniques of performing the exercises you intend to do. 

Consult your doctor before starting a new workout regime or routine to avoid any mishaps. It is also advisable to take the help or guidance of trained/certified professionals who will teach you how to perform your exercises correctly to avoid burnout and injuries.

Disclaimer: This article is written by the Practitioner for informational and educational purposes only. The content presented on this page should not be considered as a substitute for medical expertise. Please "DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE" and seek professional help regarding any health conditions or concerns. Practo will not be responsible for any act or omission arising from the interpretation of the content present on this page.