Common Weight Training Mistakes
If you’re not making progress in the gym, there is probably a logical reason behind it. Here are the top fitness training mistakes that I see in the gym – you could be making these too.
Either over or under-training and still expecting results
This one can be tricky to navigate on your own without professional help. Many people can undertrain but they can also overtrain (overtraining being the more likely scenario). Undertraining means that you don’t progressively overload your workouts (progressive overload – slowly and consistently increasing the load/intensity you are training at). This undertraining can look like consistently lifting light weights; not seeing any changes in your physique; not seeing your weight drop on the scale; or not seeing a difference in the way your clothes fit.
Overtraining means that exercise has been done in excess. This can cause burn out and lead to injury. Overtraining can look like consistent injuries (both overuse and acute); constant fatigue (during and even after training); appetite changes; mood swings (particularly if you start to dread going to the gym); decrease in performance; and lack of overall motivation. Depending on how long you’ve been in the gym, you should be able to gauge if either of these principles apply to you. If one of them does, it’s time to change your regime – either pushing harder in your workouts or easing back to allow your body some needed rest.
You do the exact same workout
The body adapts over time and essentially it will build enough muscle to accomplish the work you’ve asked it to do. Applying a more intense training regime slowly over time will allow you to build strength and grow muscle. To do this, you either need to start adding more weight to your lifts or change up the exercises you perform (or both!). To some extent, you should stay with the same exercises so it’s easier to see strength gains – but feel free to change it up occasionally. If you’ve been doing back extensions for a while now, maybe switch to hip thrusts.
Not doing a warm-up or cool-down
I don’t know how often I watch people walk into the gym, pick up some weights and start lifting. Or they finish their lifting and they just walk out. HECK NO! No matter how strapped for time you are, you need to warm-up and cool down – it’s all part and parcel of working out. Allow me to explain the importance of this; before working out, your muscles are like cold spaghetti noodles before you boil them; solid, brittle, and breakable! Not fun if broken. After muscles have been worked, allowing for a proper cool down and stretch allows for the heart to calm down and blood pressure to return to normal. Warm up and cool down people!
You’re not in it for the long haul
Unfortunately, we live in a world that is set on instant gratification and satisfaction. This doesn’t really fly well in weight training. Building muscle takes time, losing fat takes time; there’s no gimmick that will make time and consistent effort go faster. Give yourself more time than you think you need, and don’t expect miracles.
Find the joy, be kind, and we’ll chat again soon,
Questions? Email me: email@example.com