Latest posts by Rich Thurman MA, CSCS CPT, ONNIT KB Specialist (see all)
- Steel Mace Training: 3 Exercises For A Bigger Bench Press - April 20, 2016
- Steel Mace Training: What Is It? - March 28, 2016
- 10 Most Common Fitness Training Mistakes for Beginners - December 28, 2015
So many people want to get in shape but don’t know where to start. There are so many fears and so many questions that go unanswered for most beginners. It’s typically trial and error for the most part.
So here are my top 10 most common training mistakes and 10 solutions for each of them:
Getting proper instruction on technique is hugely important. This will help you prevent injury and long term setbacks. Getting proper instruction can be difficult as not everyone is qualified to give this instruction. Don’t rely on friends unless they are trained to give this advice. You wouldn’t go to a friend who is a mechanic and ask him for advice on law would you?
2. Building the house without the foundation
This one is critical. Many people just want to jump in and start straight away, not realizing that the reason they’re in pain or dislike certain exercises to begin with is due to the fact that they are doing them incorrectly. Many personal trainers out there will have you doing things far too advanced, far too quickly without clear progression and assessment of abilities. Remember to build a strong house, you must build a strong foundation.
Nutrition is absolutely essential. Getting into a rhythm of eating right and eating frequently is important before starting your fitness routines. Getting a handle on food and establishing good eating habits will make it that much easier to speed up your metabolism and reach your goals.
4. Overdoing it
This one is very important. Don’t overdo it. The goal of your start is to simply complete your workout. If you haven’t worked out in a long time, there’s no need to kill yourself on day one. Just get moving and build your intensities over time. I know many personal trainers who just believe in working maximally all the time. This only leads to overuse injuries and puts you out of commission. How much effort can you give two days from today when you can barely move because of the workout two days ago?
5. Not shopping around
This is a critical area when looking for gyms, coaches or equipment. Most people don’t know how to even shop for a gym or coach. It’s not like a pair of shoes. Those are simple right? Put them on…they fit…they look good…I’ll take them. It’s not that simple when looking for a coach. How do you choose a personal trainer? What are their qualifications? What is their background? Do they have advanced knowledge of physiology or did they just get a certificate in training? Remember, this is your body we’re talking about. You wouldn’t take your Ferrari to a guy that just learned a few things about his car while tinkering around with it would you?
6. Training Alone
Although I like to train alone, as a beginner it’s good to train with someone. As a beginner I started working out with my father and his good friend. It keeps you motivated and committed when you have another person keeping you accountable.
7. Not stretching afterwards
Muscles tend to tighten up after working out. Stretch them out and cool down properly. Your body will thank you for it. You may not notice it as many people don’t pay that much attention to the detail of their body, but you will be less sore the following day.
8. Neglecting to warm up
Warming up is essential. It’s important to raise the body’s core temperature and get the body prepared for movement. A combination of simple movements of low intensity that raise the body’s core temperature, while increasing the ranges of motion will help your body prepare itself for action. You will also get more from your workouts. The body has to know and understand that joints will be moving and changing direction so that it’s not a shock the first time you load up the weight.
9. Not having a plan
Plan your attack…Failure to plan is like planning to fail. You have to have an idea what you want to accomplish in the gym, plan it out and set goals for yourself. You can’t accomplish tasks at work without planning so how could you accomplish a fitness goal without a plan?
This is probably the most important tip of all. Rest is essential. Rest between sets, rest between workouts and rest at night are all essential. Rest allows your body to recuperate. Between sets, it gives your body an opportunity to recover and prepare the nervous system for another round. Between workouts it allows your body to repair the damage, and at night your sleep time allows your body to rebuild and repair itself, better preparing you for the next day full of activities.
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