Understanding the Basics of Strength and Weight Training
In my blog I’ll be covering a few basic things to understanding weight training which, also known as strength training, can be the most effective way to transform your body.
There are other elements that are part of the puzzle to a body transformation which include cardiovascular exercise and a healthy eating plan, but when it comes to sculpting and firming your body the most effect way to help tone up is lifting weights.
As a female I have seen great results from using weights to help tone my arms, thighs and to help sculpt my tummy, believe me when I say that after having children, I thought my tummy would never get sculpted the way it has but with consistency and hard work I have seen it transform. With the right weight training plan to help build muscle, you are helping to protect the bone mass in your body which for us females can help with osteoporosis in later life.
Also having more muscle mass will also help to boost your metabolism which in turn help’s to burn more calories even when were just sitting around, for me this is a huge bonus as an office worker I have a very sedentary job and knowing that I’m building muscle which in turn burns more calories at rest is a great positive to me!
The harder we can train the more positives it has in our resting periods, we burn more calories at rest, and you’ll notice that your appetite also increase’s after a good workout. For me, after a great weights session my appetite goes through the roof, therefore I make sure that I supplement my diet with a good clean diet high in protein, good carbohydrates and lots of vegetables.
Studies have shown that strength training can help with blood pressure, can lift your mood, help with stress levels and boost your energy.
There are important elements to strength training which include reps and sets, resting between sets, choosing the weight and exercise selection are the basics to putting together a good plan to use in your strength routine.
Without involving the science behind reps and sets and the amount of different routines possible, the basic way to begin is by having 4 sets of 10 to 12 reps (repetitions) using the weight whether it’s using the machines or dumbbells or bars,
You should be able to lift the weight for the best part of the repetitions and for the maybe the last 2 reps these should be lifted to failure, you should be tiring at the last rep which in turn maximises the tiredness of the muscle which maximises muscle growth.
A set is classed as a group of repetitions followed by a rest period and normally we’ll complete 4 of these sets. Resting between sets is equally important and resting for 60-90 seconds is always recommended. As you become stronger and able to lift heavier, the need for a greater rest also develops as well.
Choosing the weight is a learning curve for all of us, but you should always start with the light weights and gradually add on the weight to what you feel comfortable with.
Good balance is the key to a good weight training routine, making sure that you include all of your body parts. Everybody, including me, has a set routine but start with what suits you. As a good rule to follow, working opposite muscle groups is a good way to make sure you work each muscle group effectively. For example, chest and triceps training, back and bicep training. As your training progresses you find a routine that you are comfortable with, even upper body or lower body training is a good way to start.
You can find some great informative training information on the link below;
Lastly the most important part to any routine is warming up! Make sure you begin by warming up your muscles by completing up to 10 min’s of cardio activity before your training, this will help raise your body temperature helping to make muscles more pliable and responsive to you lifting the weights and will help prevent injury. Stretching is also very important. If I am honest this never really used to be on the top of my list when I entered the gym, overcoming my fears of training was always looming but over time when I found my training feet I started to incorporate more and more stretching into my routine and soon learnt how much of a positive effect it would have and always make a conscious effort to complete some form of stretching before each training session.