Easy Gym Workouts for the Unmotivated
If you are overweight and have gotten to the point where you're ready to hit the gym to start shedding more weight and gaining more muscle, there are many workouts you can do to help ease you back into the gym scene. Before getting into the specifics of these exercise and workout programs, you must know the basics of what not to do when it comes to exercising.
Common Mistakes Made When Exercising at the Gym: Cardio
So many people who want to lose weight and feel that the gym is the best place to do this could potentially run into some roadblocks. For those beginner gym goers, they may be exercising incorrectly and not realizing it. If you're not informed of what NOT to do you will never see results and you could do more harm than good.
1. Slouching on gym equipment is not going to maximize your cardio workout. Don't lean forward, lean back, or hang on with an extremely tight grip. This causes your back to round out. When you do this to your spine it doesn't allow for much support. If one of your goals is to strengthen your core muscles this isn't going to help. You need to engage your core by sitting or standing straight to optimize your results.
2. Don't hold on to any type of cardio equipment too tightly. This contributes to slouching and allows you to "cheat." It restricts your arms from moving hence restricting you to burn a lot of calories. If you don't feel comfortable with the gym equipment without gripping onto it tightly, a great alternative is to lightly rest your fingers on the bar. As you gain confidence and get more familiar with the equipment, start dropping a few fingers off the bar or even your entire hand. By letting your arm swing freely, you will increase your heart rate and will be able to burn more calories comfortably and confidently.
3. Using gym equipment to catch up on your reading is a big no-no. If you are on the bike, elliptical or treadmill and you're reading rather than focusing on your workout then you're probably not getting a workout. Save the reading for home and the gym for burning off that fat! Don't just go through the motions; leave the book at home and focus on your body, your intensity level and your breathing.
4. Never walk with weights. While this appears to be a good idea it actually limits your workout by compromising your stride. By adding weights to your hands, wrists or ankles you are essentially forcing your body to move in a more exaggerated manner. Another thing to keep in mind is that if you lean too far back or forward you will add unnecessary stress on your ankles, quadriceps, shoulders, shins, and your lower back. For the best results keep your strength training and cardio separate.
5. A common misconception is that only doing cardio exercises you will still achieve amazing results. While cardio is a must in any successful workout regimen, you will need strength training to rebuild the muscle you began losing at the age of 30. This will increase your metabolism which in turn burns more calories. Adding formal strength training to your workout routine 2 to 3 times per week separate from cardio will allow you see amazing results more quickly.
6. You are paying to go to the gym to exercise, not socialize. If you have the energy to catch up with your friends at the gym while doing cardio either face-to-face or in person you are not allowing yourself to get into a good target heart rate zone. By talking and holding onto hand grips too tightly, your chances of reaching that target heart rate zone are slim and won't be beneficial at all to your weight loss goals. A good thing to remember is do your gym cardio as you would if you were jogging, walking, running, or cycling outside.
Common Mistakes Made When Exercising at the Gym: Weight Lifting
The goal of a personal trainer is to help their clients get the best results. Just as with cardio, there are many errors that you can make when starting your strength training, especially if you're a beginner and you're not familiar with how to use weights properly. The following list includes what NOT to do when doing weight lifting exercises.
1. Don't ever copy another client or trainer's moves. Trainers will develop a training plan based upon the client's goals, pre-existing injuries and/or time. If a trainer is doing a specific move they are basing that move on what their client's goals are and what they are capable of. Even though utilizing personal trainers are the best choice in getting your desired results, don't do any exercises without knowing the correct technique and form or you could cause yourself to get injured.
2. Check the weights on a machine that a trainer just used. Don't just take on the same amount of weights that the trainer used as it may be too much or too little for you to handle. If you are jumping on a machine after a trainer, make sure you change the weights to the appropriate amount that matches your goals and capabilities.
3. To get the best results, increase lean muscle, burn more calories, and decreasing body fat, lifting weights is a must. Knowing the appropriate amount of weight you should life is crucial. If you're lifting weights that are too light, you won't achieve the results you want; if you're lifting weights that are too heavy, you risk getting injured. Women are more likely to lift weights that are too light thinking that, if they lift heavier weights, they will bulk up. Men on the other hand are more likely to lift heavier weights to get that bulk only to realize they are straining themselves by doing this. A good thing to remember is to lift weights that are comfortable using for 10 to 12 reps.
4. Hanging out on weight lifting equipment is a BIG no-no. Not only are you taking time away from other clients, you are wasting your own time that could be used working on another machine. Complete your set, briefly stretch and then move on to another machine.
5. Don't ever drop weights. Weights can tend to feel heavy while you're doing a hard weight lifting workout. Not only could you leave floor damage but you will need to pick them up again and either use them or put them back in their proper place. An important thing to remember is that some weights can bounce and roll causing injury to you or someone else. All you need to do is place them on the floor rather than dropping them from two feet up.
6. Don't make noises while working out. Those "look at me! Look at me!" grunting noises are not needed and won't make a difference in the results you will achieve. It's very distracting to other gym members as well. Also, when you're grunting you're not breathing properly making you lose your breath easily and making things more difficult for you in the long run.
7. After sweating on a machine, wipe it down. Regardless of what type of machine you're using it is common courtesy to wipe it off for the next person. It helps keep the gym sanitary and clean as well as safe for you and other gym members.