PUSHING ourselves out of our comfort zone can be daunting. There are times where we would prefer to stay in our own shadow rather than be the one out there executing amazing things. The same goes for when you step foot into the gym for the first time and you are aiming to utilize the weights section to its full potential.
As if lifting weights on your own was not intimidating enough, you will also be surrounded by various machines that have their own use and you are clueless as to how it is used. The moves can be confusing and your form may be incorrect.
However, your journey does not have to be that way. Here are some beginner tips to help you get a better grasp of the fundamental guide to weightlifting:
Prep your body
Warming up is crucial before you exercise. It does not matter whether you are about to lift weights, do endurance exercises or play badminton, this is a step that you should never take lightly or skip.
The reason being is your body needs to be primed before working out, as it aids in increasing your blood flow into your muscles and allows your muscles to stretch easily when you execute other exercises.
This will also limit the chances of getting your muscles pulled and experiencing joint pain. Some of the warming-up exercises include dynamic stretching, jumping jacks or even a five-minute slow jog on the treadmill.
Watching gym junkies lift heavy weights might be terrifying especially if you are a beginner. To conquer your fears and achieve a good workout, always start with lighter weights. This tip is extremely important because you would not want to end up dropping weight plates or dumbbells on your feet.
Choose weights that you feel confident about and you can lift up to 12-15 repetitions. It is okay to go slow and steady. This will help you focus more on your form and technique.
Maintaining good form is important in a workout as it helps you to work out more efficiently while also increasing your performance and reducing your risk of injuries. Two sets should be sufficient if you are a beginner.
Progression of weights
Once you have gained your confidence, slowly increase your weights. If you are able to lift heavier than before and execute more sets of workouts, go for it but make sure that it does not affect your form.
Sometimes you may be too immersed in your workout especially when you have found your pace in the gym. Trying to complete three sets in a short amount of time may be tempting, however, it is important to take at least two to five minutes of rest in between your workout. As a beginner, doing so will help prevent muscle fatigue.
Your muscles and central nervous system will need time to restore themselves from all the lifting. There are other benefits to taking short breaks in between workouts. For instance, it increases hypertrophy (muscle building), increases your strength and power as well as muscular endurance.
Cooling down exercises are just as important as warming up. Stretching out your muscles aids in improving flexibility and regulating your blood flow, which helps in recovering. Dynamic stretches can also be carried out in a cooling down routine.
Rest, rest, rest
Lifting weights can be addicting and you may feel you want to hit the gym every day. Avoid this rookie mistake by taking rest days.
Not only will it allow your muscles to rebuild and recover, rest days allow your body to enhance all of your hard work and rejuvenate your nervous system as well.