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The 5 Biggest Mistakes You’re Making at the Gym

by Emily Abbate on February 19, 2013 at 3:53 PM

GymOh the gym. When it comes to working out in the colder months, many of us take our calorie burning sessions indoors. I know, you love it just as much as I do, right? Using all those machines that someone else just aggressively sweat on sounds so ... enticing.

Alas, as much as I despise actually going to the gym, if I'm gonna go there and workout then you KNOW I'm gonna do it right. That's exactly why today, we're gonna tackle gym blunders.

Yup -- the top 5 mistakes you're probably making at the gym. Starting with those stretches you NEVER do.

1. Skipping stretching: Yes, stretching is time consuming. But it is WORTH it. Stretching is something that can do wonders for your muscles, alleviate back pain, and increase circulation.

2. Caring more about what you look like then what you're doing: We've all seen them -- the women who care more about where their workout clothes came from and if they match than what they're actually doing at the gym. Sure, it's OK to wear cute workout clothes. However, harness that positive energy and feeling about how you look into what you're doing. Don't be afraid to look silly. Very few people look GREAT dripping sweat.

3. Not using enough weight: If you're lifting weight that are too light then you're not building muscle mass. How do you know what's right? You should feel fatigued after doing 10 to 12 reps, no more and no less.

4. You don't lock your stuff up: I see this ALL the time at the gym. Not snagging yourself a combination lock is a lazy excuse to put your valuables at risk in the locker room. Do yourself a favor and put together a gym bag complete with sweat towel, flip flops, and a lock so you always have everything you need. It's worth the minor splurge.

5. Texting and gymming: If you're focusing on the conversation that's happening on your phone, you're definitely not giving it your all to the task at hand. It may be impressive that you can carry on a full conversation during your three mile treadmill run, but think about how much more energy you could be dedicating to your workout. More focus = better results.

What mistakes do make at the gym? What gym blunders annoy you?


Image via Emily Abbate

Filed Under: exercise


  • Pinkmani


    February 19, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    My biggest mistake is not going!

  • EmmaF...


    February 19, 2013 at 4:45 PM

    Haha i'm with you pinkmani! I'm quite self conscious when i work out, and i also hate going when it's packed full of people because i like to spend some time doing a decent workout with each machine i use, rather than flying from one to the next!

  • melissa
    -- Nonmember comment from


    February 19, 2013 at 5:55 PM
    It drives me crazy when people lift or use machines and they don't know what they are doing. At all. Form is so important for safety issues and for maximum results.a few sessions with personal trainer can help get you into good form so you know how for life. Using machines/weight is an investment and takes time money and effort in many instances.
    Also when others come to work out and they are obviously not trying hard and never do. They hog the cardio machines doing half ass work while reading gossip magazines. If your there already dedicating the time- why not try your best/do the most? I think its easier to give up when your not having to try.. its easier to become discouraged because you think " this isn't working as much as id like! " but really your not kicking it up a notch and really working for it. So you get so so results.
  • Angie...


    February 22, 2013 at 10:08 AM

    I just like to go the eliptical and treadmill, I never use the weights.... I don't really know how...

  • mommy...


    March 6, 2013 at 2:08 PM
    I don't go
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