Weight Training for Beginners
By: Bodyzone Comments: 0
For a beginner, the idea of lifting weights is as intimidating and daunting as their muscled peers who play with giant weights like its nothing. But at BodyZone fitness, we understand your thoughts about this very crucial stage in your fitness endeavours and that's why today we're going to help you kick off your weight training journey in the best way possible. And today we're going to help answer all the questions that have been bugging you for the longest time…
What exercises should I do using weights?
How many exercises should I go for?
How much should I be lifting initially?
Go for the bar or hit the dumbbells?
But before we get into anything, let's back up a little bit.
Get BIG, the right way!
Before ever trying to figure out how much weight you can lift, make sure you know how to do the movement, as flawless as possible, without any weight at all. Think about it, if your basic movement is not correct, how can you expect yourself to do properly WITH the weights on?!
Plus, why risk getting injured when you can win the right way.
So initially, try incorporating as many bodyweight exercises as you can. Perfecting at least 3 sets (15 reps) of exercises like basic push-ups, pull-ups, squats, and lunges before every weight training session will not only warm your muscles up but also shift your mind towards performing correct movement when you finally pick those weights up.
The Bar you must go to
That out the way the next step should be to be to master all movements with the barbell. And for this, let us warn you as much as we can that ego is not your friend but your worst enemy. So don't try to jack up heavy plates and dumbbells just to satisfy your ego, because doing that will inflict more harm than good.
Start out with dumbbells – while the movement is not the exact same as barbells, it allows you to build up the strength to be able to correctly handle the bar.
Now, on opposite ends of the spectrum, if the bar seems really light, we would STILL encourage you to complete your first workout with just the bar. Focus on getting each rep correct, and worry about adding weight next time.
And then comes the MOST important point, RE-RACK the equipment you use, always. Because in the end, you are as good as the respect you show to the equipment and other members in the gym.
Weight Training Time!
After properly working out and mastering all movements with just the barbell, now you can finally rack some weight on those bars.
As a beginner, this is especially important to ingrain proper technique.
• Add weight to the bar. Depending on how heavy the bar felt, start by adding anywhere from 2.5lbs to 10lbs to each side. Perform sets of 5 to 10 reps and judge how you feel.
(Note: If you're doing dumbbell training, instead of adding weight to the bar, increase the weight of the dumbbell. Start with 5lb dumbbells, then 10lbs dumbbells, for example)
• If you were able to complete those reps both without losing form and without the speed of the bar slowing, add more weight to the bar. If the last set felt really light, add 10's, if it felt heavy, add 2.5's or 5's.
• Continue to do this until your form starts to break down or the speed of the lift gets slower on any of your reps. The weight you used right before your form started to break down is your starting weight on which you will base all future workouts!
In the first two weeks, try and avoid going more than 5 exercises per muscles with 3 sets (Of 12 reps) of each exercise.
Well now that we've acquainted you with the right way to go about those weights, the next natural question that pops up in our heads is - what's next?
From here on, try and approach every workout in a progressive manner. What we mean by that is remember (Or make a note of it) the weights you had lifted the previous week for an exercise and upscaling that by 2.5lbs. This way you will force your muscles to grow and finally drive in the direction of packing on those muscles. With proper nutrition and sleep, you'll even speed up this process by almost 200%. So, it's time you drop your fear of weight and lift yourself by lifting those weights!!