Strength Comes Through Effort! Here’s How to Get There
Strength training can sound like a tough fitness routine for beginners, especially when it is your first time seeing the equipment. However, strength training is an important part of the routine for us to be physically fit and healthy.
Strength training not only enhances muscle strength and quality, but it also burns calories and improves our body’s resting metabolic rate. It even enhances our balance, reduces our risk of osteoporosis, and decreases our blood pressure.
If you’ve mastered your cardio routine, but haven’t ventured into weights… well, it is high time we step up our workout and take on new challenges: hence, strength training. Check out these tips to help you get started today:
7 Strength Training Tips for Beginners
Do a Cardio Warm-Up Before Starting
Of course, doing a cardio warm-up is essential before doing any fitness routine. However, this is especially true when it comes to strength training so we don’t get injured. When we do a proper warm-up, our heart rate will go up, and this is important so we don’t shock our bodies before lifting some weights.
Start by doing five to ten minutes of light jogging, vigorous walking, or dynamic stretching. Dynamic stretching is a combination of moving and stretching which increases your mobility and body readiness. Some examples include: forward lunge and horizontal twist, high kicks, hip stretch with a twist, jump squats, T-push-ups, and jump lunges.
Get Familiar with Equipment Options
There are a lot of beginners who mistake strength training with just using dumbbells and other weightlifting equipment. But there are many options to increase strength, even ones that we can use in the comfort of our homes.
We can use, for example, medicine balls, weight bars, resistance bands, sandbags, hand grips, and even the weight of our body.
However, if we want to take strength training to a whole new level, we should study the basics of how to do it. Check out our workout library, or do some investigating on the internet at large.
Focus on Form and Technique
Beginners often make the mistake of doing the exercise too quickly or not focusing enough on form. However, it is important to focus on form and proper technique to prevent injuries. Start with lifting light weights or no weights at all. Focusing on form and technique is one way to make sure that we are improving the right muscles and getting the full benefit of a strength training regime.
Use your first session to focus on learning the proper positions, motions, and grips. Use your resources to help you learn the right way to lift weights!
Find the Right Weight to Lift
Knowing the right amount of weight takes a bit of trial and error. Keep in mind that it is better to learn and make mistakes on lighter weights than heavier ones.
For instance, if we like to strengthen biceps, beginners should start with three sets of 15 reps of bicep curls. If it’s easy to do this properly your lightest weight (say 5lbs), then you know you’re ready for the next increment.
Always make sure to increase your weight in increments so you don’t over-tax yourself!
Know the Right Tempo
How quickly or slowly you raise and lower the weight matters. This can be known as concentric and eccentric phases, as well. Knowing the right tempo means counting to a specific number while we lower the weight, and another count while we raise it again.
A common temp is 1:3 (1 second or count to raise the weight, and 3 to lower it). Play with your tempo and see what gives you the best results. You might be surprised how just simply changing your counting can change how hard you find your workout!
Do Not Forget to Breathe
Holding our breath when doing strength training can do more harm than good because it can increase our blood pressure, plus who likes to workout when light-headed? Oxygen is essential for charging muscles so they can lift the weight you’re asking them to. Having a full ‘belly’ of air can also stabilize your core, which is safer for when you lift heavy things.
Essentially the focus is on exhaling as the weight is lifted and inhaling as the weight is lowere. But the most important thing is to remember to breathe!
Step-Up Your Routine
As we get comfortable and we master the basic steps, we can now step it up by introducing new exercises and using different equipment. Do not let monotony rule your strength training! We should spice it up with new exercises to improve our muscles and enhance our strength.
Keeping muscles challenged keeps your body adapting and improving.
Strength training can provide us a lot of physical health benefits. Aside from boosting our muscle strength and quality, it also helps to burn calories. But if we want to do strength training, it is essential to know about the essential tips before starting. Employ these tips and let us know how you did!
- 7 Tips for Newbies Who Want to Do Strength Training - March 19, 2018