So what is the most common error that I see at the gym? That’s easy; not going. However, for those who do go, there are numerous ways people sabotage their own workouts. Probably the easiest problem to fix is to avoid leaning on the cardio equipment. Take a look at the stair climbers, ellipticals, treadmills and bikes at your gym. I can almost guarantee at least one person will be hunched over, leaning his or her elbows on the handles. Not only is this bad for your back (and it looks painful), but you are burning fewer calories. Your upper body is taking some of the workload from your largest muscle groups, which will reduce the calories you burn. For best results try to avoid the handles: If you must use them for balance, stand straight and hold on lightly. You may have to reduce the speed or resistance, but you will get a better workout, and your back will thank you.