Man tired, sweating laying on floor after exercising

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NEW YORK — The average American has tried five different workout routines in the past two years. In a new poll of 2,000 adults, 34 percent struggle to find new exercise regimens.

And yet, even with the rise of the home workout during the COVID-19 pandemic, Americans say they’re more likely to exercise if someone is cheering them on.

It may be the company people keep — or don’t – when it comes to working out. One in three admit they work out alone now more frequently than they did prior to March 2020. However, about two-thirds (65%) would be more willing to work out if they had someone there to support them. More than half the poll (56%) prefer group workouts, including 27 percent who prefer to exercise with others.

The poll, conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Zhou Nutrition, also revealed that one in three Americans aren’t completely satisfied with the amount of exercise they currently get. Although respondents claimed to exercise between three and four days a week, 30 percent say finding time to work out is a challenge.

Seven in 10 believe they would exercise more if they found a routine that worked for them. Twenty-seven percent abandoned an exercise regimen because they weren’t getting the results they wanted. In fact, 65 percent would be willing to exercise more if they saw results faster.

Don’t forget to hydrate!

When asked to provide their own best advice for preparing to work out, respondents frequently mentioned stretching, drinking water, and warming up.

“I think being properly hydrated is the most important tip,” according to one respondent. “If you’re not hydrated, you run the risk of fainting or feeling too weak to maintain proper posture and form.”

Speaking of proper posture, 24 percent believe their previous routines failed because they didn’t have enough information to do it properly. Another 32 percent struggled to find something that’s appropriate for their current level of fitness.

“An effective workout will push you just enough to make progress, but only so far that you’re still able to recover,” says Cate Williams, fully certified instructor at Gym Jones and consultant for Zhou Nutrition, in a statement. “Getting stronger or faster requires you to slowly increase the training stress placed on your body. Then, proper recovery is needed to achieve muscle growth and improved fitness. Not training hard enough won’t create progress, but training too hard too often will prevent you from recovering, and making any progress at all.”

Abs are formed in the kitchen

For two-thirds of respondents, preparing for a workout with the right nutrition is just as important as the workout itself.

Forty-four percent take vitamins and supplements to aid their workout before it begins. Another 42 percent drink some kind of pre-workout beverage beforehand, and more than half eat protein after working out.

“Nutrition and supplementation can make a good workout great,” Williams adds. “Protein and carbohydrates, eaten at the right time, are important for muscle growth and proper recovery. Once you’ve got those two things covered, supplements like caffeine and creatine can help you perform at your peak and maximize results.”

About Chris Melore

Chris Melore has been a writer, researcher, editor, and producer in the New York-area since 2006. He won a local Emmy award for his work in sports television in 2011.

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