We hear it all the time! Strength training can be dreadful and overwhelming but we all know that life is EASIER and BETTER when we are STRONG. Did you know many benefits of strength training include losing fat, building muscles, improving sleep, increase in bone density, and reducing the symptoms of Parkinson’s diseases, arthritis, heart failure and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome? (www.buildlean.com)
To help explore and learn more on this topic, Shazia Hossen, personal trainer and the founder of shathletics, is here to give us some basic guidelines on weightlifting. We hope her advice helps you reach your own personal weightlifting goals. Let us welcome Shazia!
Beginners Weight Lifting Tips
By: Shazia Hossen
If you’re new to the world of weight training and looking to incorporate it into your regime, take heed of these little pointers:
–Warmup thoroughly with some cardio to get your body temp up and blood flowing. Then perform a combination of dynamic + static stretches. These lubricate the joints and reduces risk of injury.
–Start with your body weight and lightweight. A lot of people are afraid to start lifting because they’re self conscious about being seen lifting ” baby weight “. Believe it or not no one actually cares about what you’re lifting. Do not assume that all the “big” guys in the weights area particularly know what their doing either- you’d be surprised!
–Incorporate “warmup sets” with rep range of about 15-20 reps. This will increase synovial fluids secreted about your joints, and prepare your body for the load and range of motion (ROM) of your “working set”. This may also help you determine how much you should be lifting in your working set.
–How many reps you do will depend on what your goals are: hypertrophy, endurance, power, strength ect (make books and Google your friend). Example: if Yomam is trying to increase muscle mass via hypertrophy she’s aiming for about 6-10 reps for 3-4 sets. If on her warmup set she can easily perfrom 15 bicep curls with good form at 10kg, she knows she can move onto perhaps 14kg, for her working set. If she finds that she can perform 10 reps comfortably it’s too light. If her form deteriorates on the first few reps its too heavy. Yomam will adjust accordingly.
–If you are doing an exercise for the first time thoroughly look into correct form, especially for complex compound lifts such as the squat and deadlift. There is a lot we can learn from watching video tutorials, but even so it is easy to get it wrong if you are a complete beginner. Ask a personal trainer you trust to check your form, at least once, before continuing. This is extremely important in order to avoid long and short term injuries.
Yomam thought she was a pro at squats, after watching some YT vids, and did 100 a day because someone on IG with 100k followers said she should. Fortunately, a good PT informed her that her form was way off and that 100 squats a day wasn’t going to help her reach her goals. Yomam’s form was then corrected, she was given professional advice + a workout programme specific to her goals, and she lived happily ever after in the Glorious House of Gainz.
I must point out that these are basic guidelines and it is important that you do your own research to figure out what works best for you. There is no one rule for all when it comes to weight training, and fitness overall, as we are all very different in our biomechanics and physiology, and so what works well for one individual may not be particularly optimal for another.
But do not let this overwhelm you! Have fun safely experimenting with different workouts- do what you enjoy and challenge yourself to become stronger than the woman you were yesterday #NoBarriersNoExcuses