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Simple Ways to Successfully Meet Your Exercise Goals, According to Science

These small changes may help you reach your desired results.

In partnership with POM Wonderful

If you've ever spent hours at the gym or on the trail running and have experienced the feeling of not seeing results or meeting your exercise goals, then you know just how frustrating it can feel.

Often, when we set new fitness goals, we don't realize that a lot more can go into achieving them than just workouts alone. In fact, things like adequate sleep and diet play a huge role as well!

For some guidance, here are some simple ways to successfully meet your personal exercise goals, according to the latest studies and research.

Let your muscles recover


When it comes to working out and seeing the results you want, giving your muscles time to recover is key. Potassium is an electrolyte that helps support normal muscle function.

If you're looking for an easy, delicious source of potassium for your workouts, POM Wonderful 100% pomegranate juice is an excellent choice. In fact, each 8-ounce serving has as much potassium as a medium banana!

Drink pomegranate juice to help support your exercise goals

pom wonderful pour
Courtesy of POM Wonderful

Nitric oxide is a lesser-known compound produced naturally by your body that supports muscle function. It also helps supply your body with the proper nutrients and oxygen it needs in order to exercise effectively.

Research has shown that certain types of antioxidants found in pomegranate juice may help preserve the bioavailability of nitric oxide in your body by protecting it from breaking down, which helps your body get the oxygen and nutrients it needs for exercise.

Drink plenty of water

drink water

Water is crucial to drink all the time to support your health, but it's especially important to drink when you're actively exercising. Naturally, you sweat when your body temperature heats up during a workout, which means you're also losing water.

According to Nutrition Journal, this loss of water can result in lower endurance and a decrease in performance. In order to maintain your exercise goals, make sure to drink plenty of water and keep your body hydrated.

Eat enough protein

eating before workout

It's been shown that resistance training is more effective in building muscle than cardio or aerobic exercise, but it's important to make sure you're getting enough protein in your diet for this type of training.

Nutrition Journal states that more protein is required for those who are strength training than for those who are "sedentary," because adequate amounts of dietary protein can help you build muscle mass and more strength.

The Wrong Amount of Protein to Eat Every Day, Says Dietitian

Be prepared with a healthy snack after your workout

eating parfait

Have you ever finished a workout and gotten that intense feeling of wanting to grab a brownie or order some french fries? Although these cravings are common after burning calories, they will not support your exercise goals and the results that you desire in the same way as whole foods can.

A study published in the journal Nutrients showed that participants were less likely to choose an apple over a brownie after a workout and that some participants were more likely to skip on a snack altogether. This shows the importance of having a health-supporting, post-workout snack readily available or already prepared in order to more easily choose it when you're done! That way you can (hopefully) skip out on the brownie.

When looking for the ideal post-workout snack, protein is key. Pistachios are a good source of protein and fiber with better-for-you unsaturated fats and all nine essential amino acids. They're perfect for a quick power-up before or after a workout.

The American College of Sports Medicine's Health & Fitness Journal also "notes that it is good to get into the habit of refueling post-workout with a small snack that includes carbohydrates and protein." Their experts recommend yogurt with berries or a smoothie (we like making a recovery smoothie with protein powder and POM Wonderful 100% pomegranate juice).

Samantha Boesch
Samantha was born and raised in Orlando, Florida and now works as a writer in Brooklyn, NY. Read more about Samantha