Jumping into a strength training routine can be intimidating. Whether you are at home with a bunch of equipment you have only seen 30 second infomercials on or at a local gym with muscle heads and regulars, it can be an intimidating situation. We are here to make your initiation into the strength training world an easier transition.
TIP #1: DO A PRE-WORKOUT STRETCH
Stretching your muscles prior to your workout will help you perform better as well as prevent injury, especially if you are just beginning. According to About.com, stretching has many benefits. Some of these benefits include increasing flexibility, preventing injury, increasing sports performance, and decreasing the soreness of your muscles after a workout. Who doesn’t want LESS MUSCLE SORENESS? Right?!
TIP #2: LEARN YOUR EQUIPMENT
When you get into a new fitness environment don’t be afraid to explore. If you are in a group fitness setting, like at Focused Fitness, don’t be afraid to ask the instructors questions. Even at most gyms there is a trainer or employee on hand to answer any questions you have. THERE ARE NO DUMB QUESTIONS. That is what the staff is there for. In addition, most weight lifting equipment is required to have proper use instructions listed on the machine. Don’t be afraid to actually read them! They will show you targeted muscles, warnings, as well as basic instructions to use the machine.
TIP #3: USE PROPER WEIGHTS
When beginning or returning to a strength training routine, you don’t want to start out to heavy. We all feel ambitious and confident when we start stacking the weight, but this can easily lead to large muscle tears or even muscle pulls that can happen at a later time. Start off with a lighter weight that you are comfortable with as a beginning point. From here you can continue to increase the weight using safe guidelines. According to exrx.net, it is recommended that you only increase weight after successfully completing 12 repetitions of an exercise with proper form. After this, you then increase the load by 5%. Rule of thumb, move up minimally.
THAT’S IT! With these tips you are well on your way to getting started in a strength training program. The main thing to remember is to ACTUALLY START!
So get to a gym. Understand your surroundings. Get started. EARN YOUR BODY