Mindset before anything else – don’t force yourself to go to the gym, listen to your body. Here’s our advice on how to go about weight training…

Going through the motions

I’ve had days when my head isn’t in it, when I just want to go home and lie on the sofa; but I have also had days when I’m full of energy and raring to go! You may not think it, but your mood can have a massive impact on your performance, the question is ‘how do I overcome this?’ So you need to find your inner warrior, your fight side!

Motivation can come in many forms, but it’s all about finding the one that works best for you. Whether you save images of your fitness goals on your phone, self-reassurance or plan your diet.

Research is key!

Diets, there are so many to choose from, where to start! Amongst the trending diet plans are the Keto, Atkins, Dukan, plant-based diet – which one you decide on all depends on your personal fitness goals, budget and more importantly your health!

What I have found is, like a lot of things, research is key!

Going to the gym for the first time can be daunting, but I find, once I am in there and see everyone else getting on with it, I feel more motivated.

Planning ahead

Knowing what you are doing before you even step foot in a gym is vital; I find that my session flows better when I am prepared, because I am not constantly stopping to scroll through my phone to see what I’m doing next. When weight lifting, it’s easier to focus on one or two body parts you would like to work on during your session; whether it is back and biceps, shoulders and triceps, or leg day – this keeps your workout interesting and varied!

Rest Days

Although working out is great for the body, mind and soul; you need to rest as well. Your days off don’t have to be spent lying on the sofa (although that sounds great), you could head to your nearest spa and indulge in a jacuzzi, steam room and sauna, perhaps book yourself in for a cheeky massage too to release tension and relax. Rest days are important as they help to give your muscles a break!

Spotting

When lifting weights, in particular free weights, it is advised that you ask someone (friend or the person next to you) to spot you, spotting is an act of support which allows you to do the majority of the lifting with a helping hand, this can help you to lift more than you think, and safely!

Knowing your limits

Give yourself time to lift the weights, don’t rush to your goal. As the famous saying goes “don’t run before you can walk”, this can lead to injuries and pain. As explained in the point above, it is better to ask someone to spot you if you want to go up in weights, as a safety measure if nothing else!

Tips and tricks

If you can’t find someone to support (spot) you then try out the cable machines, these are just as good as free weights. Using cable machines can be helpful when weight training as there is constant tension on your muscle therefore you are working more, whereas when you rest your arm down with a free weight there is very little strain. Also, you don’t need a spotter as much because the cable will always retract back to its original position, but whatever you do, release the weight slowly otherwise this can cause damage to the equipment.

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