When you think of strength training, you probably think of men in grungy gyms lifting heavy weights and straining to lift them again. However, as more and more women realize the benefits of strength training, it’s become an increasingly popular way to get fit.
Training with weight has a whole lot of benefits for women, from increased metabolism to stronger bones. It also helps you get fit faster than cardio alone.
But how do you get started? Because, unlike cardio, there is a little bit of technique involved in weightlifting that can seem intimidating if you’ve never done it before.
Here are some tips on how you can get started with strength training at home.
Warm up before you strength train
You should always warm up before you start lifting weights. A warm-up increases your core body temperature and blood flow, helping to reduce the risk of injury. It also prepares your muscles for the exercise to follow. Making your workout more effective.
Your warm-up doesn’t have to last long, depending on how intense your workout will be. Warming up for five minutes should be enough.
When starting your workout, warm up both your body and your muscles. Do this with some light cardio and stretching exercises. The cardio can be as simple as jogging in place or doing jumping jacks for a minute.
Warming up will help to reduce the risk of injury and improve your overall workout by getting your muscles ready.
Start with bodyweight exercises
Many people lift weights when starting a strength training program. But you can strength train without weight. You can start your weight-lifting journey with bodyweight exercises instead, Start with moves like squats, lunges, and push-ups.
Body weight exercise is when you use your own weight as resistance. Bodyweight exercises are a great way to build a strong, toned body without putting any strain on your joints.
This is particularly important if you have any pre-existing injuries or joint problems. Lifting weights can put a lot of stress on your knees and ankles. So it’s best to start with less intense exercises.
Plus, doing bodyweight exercises first allows you to focus on the correct technique. Which will help you to prevent injury when you’re lifting heavier weights.
Don’t be afraid to lift light weights
As we’ve discussed, going too heavy from the beginning can be a bad idea! But you don’t have to be lifting 1-pound weights either. You should be lifting enough so that the last couple of reps are difficult to finish.
If you’re new to strength training you can start with a pair of five and eight-pound weights. As you get stronger you can lift heavier.
You’ll always want to pay attention to how your body feels. You can pick up heavier weights and do a couple of reps. If the heavier weights feel too difficult then you can go back down.
Also, the amount of weight you want to use will depend on which body part you’re working on. When you are doing an upper body workout you’ll use lighter weights because you’re using smaller muscles.
But when you’re working your lower body you can use heavier weights because those muscles are bigger.
Mix things up
After a few months of lifting weights, you’ll want to change up your routine to prevent your muscles from getting too used to the same exercises. And you’ll most likely get bored from doing the same thing over and over again.
So, don’t be afraid to experiment with different exercises, too. A good way to mix it up is by doing barre or pilates workouts. You’ll be using lighter weight and your body to sculpt your muscles.
Check out this post for different workouts you can do at home to keep things new and fresh.
Go for compound movements
Compound movements are a great way to strength train. These moves work out more than one muscle at a time, so you get more bang for your buck.
Compound movements use multiple muscles at the same time. A good example of a compound movement is squats. Squats work your thighs, calves, and glutes all with the same move.
Track your progress
If you’ve never lifted weights before, you might be a little nervous about how your body will change. Many people think if you weight train you’ll look bulky. But it takes more than strength training to get huge muscles like the Hulk:)
The changes you’ll see in your body from strength training are a good benefit. You won’t always see the changes, though so it can be helpful to track them.
By tracking your progress, you can see how your body reacts to lifting weights. You can do this by taking before and after photos. Weighing yourself before and after a few months of lifting. Or by taking measurements of body parts, like your arms, thighs, hips, chest, and waist.
Eat and breathe protein before and after training
To get the most out of your workout, you need to give your body the right nutrients to recover. This means eating protein before and after your workout. This will help to repair your muscles after a workout and encourage growth.
Also, protein helps to build muscle. So when you eat more protein you’re going to maintain the muscle mass you already have. And build more muscle when you strength train.
There are many different types of protein, and they can be found in a variety of foods. Some good sources of plant-based proteins include beans, lentils, nuts, and seeds.
For animal-based proteins, try eggs, meat, poultry, fish, or dairy products.No matter which type of protein you choose, you will be getting many benefits.
For more tips and benefits of eating more protein check out this post about High Protein Foods to Add to your Diet
Don’t push yourself too hard too soon
It can be easy to be a little overzealous when you start weightlifting, but you have to be careful not to push yourself too hard too soon. You’ll need to ease yourself into a weightlifting routine. Especially if you’ve never done it before. Start off with light weights and increase the difficulty as you progress.
It’s a good idea to start strength training when you’re feeling healthy. If you’re sick or under a lot of stress, your body might not be able to cope with the strain of lifting weights.
The Last Thing to know about Strength Training for Beginners
You’ll notice many positive changes from strength training. Such as stronger muscles, more energy, and better posture. Strength training is a great way for women to get fit. It can be intimidating, but with the right approach, you can reap the benefits of this type of workout.
Before you start, make sure you get the right advice and equipment. Then, try to mix things up and start tracking your progress. With these tips, you can get started on the right path to a stronger, fitter body.