Getting In Shape Shouldn’t Come with Injuries

weight training injury

Many people set out to whip their bodies into shape with a huge weight loss goal that they want to achieve in a relatively short period of time. Rather than making that goal many of them will end up with injuries that plant them firmly back on the couch. The good news is you can get in shape without hurting your body or making your physical condition worse.

First, make sure you start out with exercises suitable to your current level of physical fitness. The fastest way to get injured is to start training like a marathon runner when you can barely walk a mile. Every workout should be challenging, but it shouldn’t leave you weak and crippled. Push your body too far too fast and you will end up with an injury.

Planning ahead so you know exactly when you are going to workout, how long your workouts are going to be, and what those exercises will be is also a good way to prevent injuries. This type of planning can also ensure you stick with your workout program long term and keep the weight off forever.

Be realistic when determining what days of the week you workout and how long you workout. You don’t need two hour runs right from the start. A half an hour every other day right after dinner would be a reasonable plan for one person while an hour three mornings a week would be suitable to someone else.

Be realistic about when and how long you can really workout, otherwise you set yourself up for failure.

Finally, get some basic workout equipment so you can workout right at home. A set of light dumbbells or some good resistance bands is all you need to challenge your muscles and get in a great calorie-burning workout in your own living room. An exercise ball could be quite useful as well.

Weight Training 101 – Getting Started

weight lifting

Lifting weights is one of the best things that you can do to not only change your body, but to lose fat as well.  Weight training really is the key to changing the look of your body but working on cardio as well as following a proper diet is also very important. Some people are reluctant to get into a program for strength training but the following benefits of lifting weights may help to get you motivated:

  • By increasing the amount of muscle you have, you can help boost your metabolism because your muscles actually burn more calories rather than fat.
  • You can toughen up your bones which is very important to all females
  • You can enhance the endurance of your muscles in addition to increasing your strength
  • Work outs are safer which means less injuries
  • You can boost your self esteem as well as your confidence
  • Balance and coordination are improved

Starting out with strength training can pose many questions such as – which exercises are best? How many reps should I do as well as sets? How do I know if I have enough weights?  When you choose a routine, you will want to consider the amount of time you can spend on training, what your end goal is and what type of gym equipment you have to get the job done.

The Basics

There are some basic principles for strength training that need to be learned if you are going to work on your own program.  This will help you in deciding how much weight you need to use as well as the amount of sets and reps you will need to do so that you are making progress with your routine.

  1. Excess: You need to use resistance to help you build muscle.  This means that you need to use more weight for resistance to help build up your muscles.  It only makes sense that your body will be able to do more with weights as you keep working at it.  You will need to increase your weights and workload gradually so that you will not over do it or reach a plateau.  You should be able to complete your workout with some difficulty but also keep your form good while doing it.
  2. Development. It is best to increase the intensity of your workouts periodically to avoid hitting a plateau.  This can be done by adding on weights, doing different exercises, switching your type of resistance or adding in more sets/reps.  It is best to do this slowly once a week or at least once a month.
  1. Specificity. This means to be specific and train your body to meet your goal.  For instance, if you want to work on being stronger then make your workouts targeted to your goal.  You can add more weights as you get closer to your goal or if you are trying to lose weight then you will want to do a variety of exercises and reps that target various muscles fibers.
  1. Recovery and Rest. Having a day of rest is just as important as having days for exercising.  It is best to never work the same groups of muscles for consecutive days.  Your muscles need the break to grow and transform.

It is important to keep a few key points in mind prior to working on your own routine.

  1. Warming up is essential before you do any type of weight lifting.  You can help to prevent injuring yourself just by warming your muscles up.  The best way to do this is by starting with a light set of exercises or by doing a light cardio workout.
  2. Slowly raise and lower your weights. You should never have to gain momentum to lift the weights.  If you find that you have to do this then you need to lessen the amount of weight, you are using.
  3. Don’t forget to Breathe. You should always breathe through each movement and be sure to use full range of motion when you go through each movement.
  4. Use good posture. It is best to stand up straight and use good posture when working out.  Try to use your abs with every movement so you can protect your back bone as well as keep good balance.