5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Starting The Gym

Avoid the fitness mistakes I made as a gym newbie! You don’t want to hinder your progress or risk injury. Gain muscle and get in shape by steering clear of common pitfalls. Plus, don’t forget about “noob gains” – make the most of them while you can.

Keep reading to learn what to avoid and set yourself up for success at the gym!


Not Enough Compound Exercises

Here are some tips for maximizing your workouts:

  • Focus on compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups, like squats, pull ups, and deadlifts.
  • Don’t just work on isolated moves or “show muscles” like biceps and triceps.
  • If you’re not ready for a barbell, try doing push ups to work your chest, shoulders, and triceps.
  • Pull ups are a great compound movement, but can be challenging. If you struggle with them, try practicing with the lat pull down machine.


No Mind Muscle Connection

Do you struggle to feel your muscles working during exercises? You may be lacking mind to muscle connection. Here are some possible reasons and solutions:

  • The weight is too heavy and your body is focused on lifting rather than feeling. Try reducing the weight.
  • Your form is off. Adjust your form, for example, by bringing your elbows closer in on a barbell press to engage your chest.
  • Your focus isn’t there. Slow down and focus on the movement to really feel the muscle working.

Remember, mind to muscle connection is essential for effective workouts.


Not Enough Free Weights

Beginner mistake alert

Relying too much on machines and neglecting free weights. Although machines are a good starting point, they can’t compare to the benefits of free weights (depending on the machine brand).

For instance, the smith machine only allows for up and down movement and stabilises the weight for you. But with a regular squat rack, you engage more muscles just to hold the weight steady, let alone perform the exercise.

To avoid muscle imbalances, use dumbbells as well as barbells and machines. Dumbbells help you balance out any muscle imbalances and strengthen your weaker side. Also, remember that you might be able to lift heavier with machines, but with free weights, you may need to decrease the weight to perform the exercise correctly.

Key Takeaways

  • Don’t rely solely on machines, incorporate free weights into your workouts.
  • Machines stabilise the weight for you, whereas free weights require more engagement from your body to stabilize itself.
  • Use dumbbells to balance out muscle imbalances and strengthen your weaker side.
  • You may be able to lift heavier with machines, but with free weights, you may need to decrease the weight to perform the exercise correctly.


In the Gym Too Much With Poor Recovery

More doesn’t necessarily mean better, a lot of people think that the more you go to the gym the fast your going to gain muscle. This isn’t necessarily true, as a beginner your more prone to build muscle anyway. As a beginner the main thing you need to focus on is eating the right amount of foods and training around 3 – 4 times a week for 45 to 60 minuets.. 90 minuets tops! A fundamental part of building muscle is also having recovery time, if you try and constantly exhaust your muscles your not giving your muscles time to repair and if you didn’t know recovery is when you actually build the muscle.


Not Knowing my Calories & Macros

Final Tip: track your calorie intake for successful weight loss or gain.

  • The most fundamental tip: track your calorie intake.
  • Knowing how much you consume can make a big difference in your progress.
  • Tracking your calories helps you stay on track with your weight loss or gain goals.
  • Without tracking, your progress may be slim to none because you’re unaware of how much you’re consuming.
  • Start by loosely tracking your calories to get a feel for portion sizes, and eventually, you can eat intuitively.
  • Remember, you can’t out-train a bad diet, so focus on nutrition and fitness together!


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