If you’re new to a lifestyle that includes regular workouts, it can be all too easy to feel drained all the time. Exercise is hard – especially when you’re trying to build the habit. Here are the basics you need to have covered in order to feel your best.

Eat Well Before

Diet is an essential part of a good workout. After all, the fuel that you put in your body is what gets used up by a workout. Don’t expect to feel good after working out if all you do is fill yourself up on junk food. Conversely, don’t expect to feel good after a workout if you starve yourself. It’s good to eat! Energy is important. You’re especially going to want to make sure that you get plenty of carbs and proteins. Carbs get a bad reputation, but they operate as the body’s primary unit of energy. Proteins are essential for muscle growth in both aerobic and anaerobic exercise. Make sure you eat well before you begin your workout so that the food is already well-digested. Working out right after eating is a recipe for an upset stomach.

Stay Hydrated

Science has long demonstrated the benefits of good hydration. Good hydration means a body and brain that is constantly in tip-top shape. It means that your body’s toxins and by-products of digestion will be constantly flushed out of your system. Your mind will be clearer and physical exercise will not be as painful. Make sure to drink plenty of water a day – most sources recommend eight to twelve cups. Avoid liquids that could be unhealthy or that carry too much sugar, like soda, juice, and even some sports drinks. Certain sports drinks are full of added sugars that can hurt your recovery.

Know When to Stop

Whether you’re a beginner or you’re very experienced with exercise, you need to know your healthy limits. Knowing when and how to limit yourself can even have health benefits! For example, when it comes to weightlifting, it’s not typically in your best interest to work out the same parts of your body every day. Muscles need time to heal and grow. Leaving a break of a day or two in between workouts for a particular group of muscles will work wonders.

You need to know what point you are at. Don’t be embarrassed if you need to start with small, realistic steps in the right direction. Building consistency and building the habit is key. With the right preparation and know-how, your workouts will leave you feeling rejuvenated.

Check out this article on how to create a balanced workout plan!