Here are my top tips for getting the most out of your strength training programs.
- Stretch and warm up—Warming up the muscles will not only ensure your body responds better to strength training, but it will also help you to avoid injury.
- Use correct technique—Bad technique leads to injuries and poor gains. Take the time to get the right technique. If you’re struggling for form then the weight is too heavy.
- Include compound exercises— Compound exercises are simply exercises that target more than one muscle group, making your workouts more time efficient. For beginners, compound exercises will help keep your workout short and will allow your body to adapt to the rigors of weight training. Examples include; Clean and Press, Bent over Row, Press-ups, Bench Press.
- Progressively overload— The body adapts to increasing load, and as you get stronger you need to lift heavier weights to overload and improve more.
- Set the right order—Use dumbbells, barbells, and machines—in that order. The smaller stabilizer muscles fatigue first, so you leave the machines to last as they don’t rely on these muscles as much.
- Alternate muscle groups—maximize you gym time by reducing time between sets by doing sets with alternate muscle groups. For example, when working the arms, alternate bicep curls with dips, so while you are doing the curls the triceps are resting, and vice versa.
- Work both sides—Use dumbbells to give each arm an individual workout, as using machines you can sometimes favour one side of the body.
- Give your body the right fuels—to build muscle you need to make sure your diet includes adequate protein at the right time, as well as enough total energy in the diet to ensure the body can build the muscle tissue.
- Keep it fresh—Mix up your workout sessions, join a class, try a new machine, and change your strength days. Shock your body into new growth.
- Record your progress—Keep a log of your sessions, this way you can see your progress and you know what weights you were lifting in your last session. Following your progress and seeing the gains you have made, are great motivational tools.
- Resistance training articles
- Maximizing your strength workouts — make changes to get the same benefits in half the time.
- Adding Strength Training To Your Daily Routine — top 10 reasons
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- About Resistance training exercises
- Fitness Exercises Database
- These tips are derived from just a small part of the Fitness Tips eBook 100 Essential Fitness Tips — get your free download.