The Best Way for Beginners to Start Strength Training

Strength training should be a part of your fitness routine regardless of your preferred training method. Strength training has numerous benefits, including increasing bone mass, improving lean muscle mass, improving cardiovascular fitness and strength, and even improving your sense of well-being. You don’t have to be The Rock in the gym to get these benefits. Continue reading if you’re not sure where to start with your training and want expert advice.

How do you get started with strength training?

1. Begin with your own weight.

It’s all too tempting to push yourself too hard too fast, which can result in injury and burnout in the short and long run. Start slowly and steadily to avoid overwhelming yourself and your muscles. “Bodyweight exercises can be a wonderful place to start if you’re new to strength training since they can help teach you perfect form when going through different sorts of exercises,” says Kelsey Wells, NASM-certified, author of the PWR programmes on the Sweat app.

“Starting with bodyweight workouts allows the user to ease into this new kind of training while being able to go at their own pace and minimise the risk of overtraining,” says Anissia Hughes, NASM-certified and author of the Bodyweight Strength with Anissia Sweat app programme.

If you’re absolutely new to strength training, you can benefit from having a trainer build a specific programme for you or following a generic programme created by a licenced trainer, in addition to starting with your bodyweight. “This can assist guarantee that you’re not overtraining, that your body is being trained equally, that you’re employing proper exercise technique, and that you’re getting the most out of your training time,” Wells adds.

2. Gradually add weight

Wells advises that if you’re comfortable with bodyweight workouts and have mastered the fundamental movement patterns, you can progress to using light weights. She recommends starting with “whatever feels comfortable yet hard” and gradually increasing the intensity as you gain strength and confidence with weights.

“It is vitally crucial to focus on completing each exercise and repetition with good form to help limit your risk of injury and obtain the physical advantages of this method of training,” Wells says, no matter what type of weightlifting you practise or how heavy you lift. Yes, weight is crucial depending on your goals, but lifting with perfect form is even more important.

How frequently should you strength train?

The frequency with which you should strength train each week depends on your skill level and goals. Wells suggests beginning with three days of training each week. To avoid acute stiffness and to give your body adequate time to recuperate, you’ll want to space these days out, especially when you’re just getting started. A minimum of one day’s recuperation should be sufficient between each session.

If you’ve previously built a base strength foundation, Hughes suggests starting with three to four sessions each week. “However, fitness is very personal, therefore while developing a training routine, it is necessary to consider the individual’s schedule and lifestyle,” she explains. It’s also crucial to be honest with yourself about your abilities and fitness level, and to gradually raise the intensity and volume.

You can conduct workouts that isolate specific muscle parts, such as the legs, or full-body workouts in addition to training three times per week. If you’re not sure where to start, start with a programme (both Hughes and Wells have programmes available on the Sweat app) or work with a licenced personal trainer.

Start increasing your strength with this 10-minute arms and abs workout:

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