So you’ve been lifting some weights to get into shape or maybe you are just about to start, either or good on you, getting in shape is no joke and weight lifting is a great way to really get a good workout in however make sure you know some of the more important stuff so you don’t injure yourself. Weight lifting can really get your sweat going for any workout, plus if done correctly with some cardio and a great diet, you’re bound to lose some weight. The only danger is not knowing what to do with weights, and not remembering these things can lead to a world of hurt. Additionally there are a ton of misconceptions when weight lifting that it needs to have some clarifications that needs to be shared. So here below are 5 things that you need to remember regarding safety and common misunderstandings that veterans and newbie’s alike make regarding weight lifting. Take the time to read it in order to find out more about weight lifting, if you’re just about to start this is important if you’ve been doing the workout for quite awhile already, it’s always good to brush up every now and again.
Weight lifting does not necessarily mean that you will bulk up – This is a common misconception when someone starts weight lifting and it is not entirely true. While it is possible to gain a lot of muscle when you’ve decided to start weight lifting and when I talk about muscle, I’m talking about a lot of potential muscles here, however weights doesn’t necessarily mean that you will gain said mass. Again the potential is there, it depends on how much weights you actually lift, the reps you do and the times you go to the gym as well. There are a lot of factors that can really dictate how much muscle you can gain when you are weight lifting but if you aren’t into heavy muscles, just go simple with your workout and you’ll be lean and mean instead of big and strong, the choice is really yours.
Remember the right way to lift – This, I cannot stress this enough, so I will say it again – this is really important. As newbies your first job is to figure out the proper form and positions you need to do when lifting, every angle and form, burn them into your brain and into your workout. These tried and practiced forms will make sure that as someone new to the gym you won’t end up with an injury or pull something, putting yourself out of commission. For veterans however it is important to remember and practice form for pretty much the same reasons, but you need to make sure you aren’t complacent every time you go to the gym, a moment of carelessness could lead to a long time out of commission and nobody wants that. As important as this reminder is, I will stress again that you must lift by doing the proper form, otherwise might as well open a door to a world of hurt yourself.
When do I increase weights or reps? – Well this is a little tough, since it really varies from person to person however the general rule of thumb is, if the reps or the weights are too easy on your last set, maybe it’s time to step up a little. Mind you as a newbie, it is ideal to slow down a little and get used to the form, the weights and reps, no need to rush these things. As seasoned veterans in the gym workout, you probably know when to increase weights and reps already so this is almost secondary nature. Just make sure you don’t go overboard and carry too much weight or do too many reps, it is rather tempting to some people but control and knowing your limits is a must for weight lifting. Don’t rush it, if you are doing things right, which I am hoping you are, you will reach more weights, reps and sets in no time. The gym isn’t going anywhere, neither are those weights, so enjoy the casual, sweaty and rather heavy walk to your goal.
Make a journal – Track your progress, it isn’t a good idea to just try to wing things. The journal will be the definitive guide to knowing if you are doing well on your weight lifting workout or otherwise. You will be able to know how many reps, sets and weights you are doing, this way you won’t injure yourself by doing too much, too soon. The journal is a great idea to track your weight gain or loss, which ever you are gunning for as well, so it is ideal to really make sure that you maintain and update the journal for maximum workout effect. I know a number of people who have benefited from keeping a journal and to be honest I haven’t met anyone who has had negative effects from keeping a said journal, so I don’t see a reason as to why anyone would not keep a journal, so what’s stopping you? I personally suggest that you stick with a written journal rather than an electric one. There’s just some satisfaction to having your progress written by hand, but hey go with whatever works for you.
Make sure to warm up and cool down – An ideal way to really avoid injury is to take the time to warm up before weight lifting and then take a little more time to cool down after your workout. Some people tend to forget to do warm ups and cool downs, this should become automatic for you before and after any workout, especially for weight lifting as people can get some pretty gnarly injuries when left with cold muscles. And yes I did use the word gnarly, not sure why but it felt right for that statement. As one of the more important things to remember, the warm up and cool down should be on top of your list of things to do before and after weight lifting, do not underestimate how important either one is for your safety and well being.
And there we have it, some simple things to remember when you are going to go weight lifting. They are the basic of the basic actually when you workout and please take the time to re-read anything if you don’t understand. Your safety when weight lifting is always at the utmost importance, progress comes second, why you may ask? If you get injured, your progress will come to a grinding halt, so again it’s in your best interest to really take everything to heart. So aside from the safety tips the misconceptions need to be cleared up as mentioned above. Stay healthy!