When you enter the group fitness room at any of Denver's outstanding fitness facilities, one of your goals should be to get the best workout you can possibly get with what the instructor offers you. Here are some tips for achieving that:
- Be on time. Missing the warmup means your body has missed its chance to prepare for the work that is to come. A proper warmup is crucial. Sometimes life happens, so if you are running late, take a minute or two outside on the elliptical to get your heart rate up and break a sweat before you join the group.
- Do what the instructor says -- and then some. If you're in there to push it and regular jumping jacks aren't making you as tired as you want to be, throw in a few eagle jumps. Add more weight to your bar. Challenge your body. That little extra push could pay off big time. At the same time, you know your body best. If you're recovering from an injury, you know there might be certain things you shouldn't do, so don't do them.
- Ask questions. During class is not always the best time, but before or after class is fine. Ask how you can improve your form, ask about why certain exercises are good for certain things, ask, ask, ask. Fitness instructors have a wealth of knowledge to share -- and it's free if you ask for it.
- Have a good attitude. Your outlook on the workout will have an effect on how effective it is for you -- and, of course, how much fun you have. Even if it's not the type of class you'd normally take, or you're being asked to do exercises you've never done before, make a decision to enjoy your time there. Martha Washington said, "...I have learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances."
- Stay for the whole class. Missing the cooldown and stretching is just as bad as missing the warmup. Make sure you get those muscles lengthened out after they work so hard! If you're in a time crunch, consider other ways to save a few minutes (because really, all we're talking is about 5-10 minutes, depending on the class) or try to come to class at a different time.