A solid pre-workout routine begins long before you step into gym shorts or break a sweat. And like everything else, sloppy prep translates to sloppy execution. That can lead to uninspired training sessions or injury, both of which inhibit strength and muscle gains, or weight loss.

To help you craft a sound pre-training regimen, we asked Patrick Solano, C.S.C.S., strength and conditioning specialist at the UFC Gym in Torrance, California, for his pre-workout necessities.