A newbies guide to the gym/strength training

Standard

I got asked if I could write a little guide for someone new at the gym… (this is towards strength training, not cardio ;))

My first bit of advice is to Do your research!! Google and YouTube exercises so you know how to do them. Also you can practise doing the movement in your room, just so you feel confident.

 

Write up a plan: How are you going to workout? What are you going to do? Reps and sets? Do you have a time limit?
Write up your workout plan and exercises on your phone or on paper so you know what you are going to do.
always have a plan before I go to the gym, otherwise I’ll just buzz around in the gym and do 2 sets on one machine then stand there and try tO figure out what my next exercise will be etc
If you don’t have time to make a plan before hand. Then step on the treadmill or sit on the bike and think out a plan. Then you can feel more confident.

 

Have a back up: Having a back up plan of different exercises can be good if the machines you want to use are taken or there are lots of people.

 

Watch what others are doing: Subtly!!! I’ve had before where newbies are very obvious they are new because they stand there and just stare while you do the exercise. This creeps me out and i feel nervous!! But say you are having your rest in between sets then subtly look over at others to get inspiration and see how exercises are Done! I do this all the time… Whether it’s because I think the guy doing the exercise is cute or because I am really impressed by the exercises the girl behind me is doing or because it’d a new exercise i want to try!!!

 

Don’t be scared to ask for help! This is important! It’s better to do right than hurt yourself. Infact the last day when I did a chest workout (only my second one because I don’t like training chest) i asked one of the older guys working out if he could look at my technique and he said it look good. And that helped alot, i had done my research and looked at videos on how to preform the exercise beforehand. So that helped me.
Don’t let your ego get in the way, ask for help if you need it!!

Create a good workout playlist! If you have good music it will motivate you even more and get you pushing that bit harder!!!

 

 

 

Onto actual strength training bit….

Begin with getting the technique. Exercises such as squats, deadlifts, push ups, chins etc you want to make sure you do correctly before you add weight (squats and deadlifts) It can be good to ask someone to look at your technique.

 

Focus on contact and technique before weight: I prefer to focus on contact rather than weight, sometimes I need to lower the weight and do more reps to feel the burn. Sometimes when you add too much weight you lose technique and then don’t feel the contact in the right muscles.

Don’t be scared to increase weight: When you feel that yiu have the technique don’t be scared to increase your weight…. don’t just stick to 3&;4kg… but go higher.

Depending on what your goal is between 8-15 reps and anywhere from 3-12 sets. (I can do up to 10 sets on one exercise sometimes.)

Begin with maybe 3 strength training workout a week and then increase if you want. Aim for 40-90 minutes. ( mine are usually 45-60 minutes).
The amount of exercises i do depends…. sometimes 4 exercise sometimes 12.

For warm up, make sure the muscle you ate working is warmed up before. Whether you run, do the cross trainer or use a light weight and do some exercises for that muscle group is recommended!!

Remember to rest and eat properly when you strength train!!! When working your muscles, you break them down. And it’s when you eat and rest that they grow back stronger!!!

Feel confident, motivated and ready to go when you enter the gym!

Also, good workout clothes can really help you!!! For me, when i have a good workout outfit i feel 100% more motivated!!! :)

THIS post can help you make a strength training plan :)

Banana recipes

Standard

I feel like i miss out on alot not being able to eat banana :( Below are some simple recipes which include banana :) So go ahead and try some!

 

Egg & banana pancake (can add in cottage cheese&berries/cinnamon/stevia etc to the mixture!)

 

Banana ice cream:

 

Banana and peanut butter/dipped in chocolate

 

 

 

Banana chocolate popsicle!

 

Bananan split

 

Grilled banana boats

 

Banana bread/muffins/cakes

 

 

Bananan smoothie or milkshake

 

Banana chips

 

Now ive just made myself feel sad… hahah!!!  I can eat a little banana, its just then that i need to take the consequences… but maybe its worth it? A grilled banana with chocolate sounds yummy right now!!! :)

 

The importance of rest days

Standard

 

Rest days are critical to sports performance for a variety of reasons. Some are physiological and some are psychological. Rest is physically necessary so that the muscles can repair, rebuild and strengthen. For recreational athletes, building in rest days can help maintain a better balance between home, work and fitness goals. In the worst-case scenario, too few rest and recovery days can lead to overtraining syndrome - a difficult condition to recover from.

What Happens During Recovery?: Building recovery time into any training program is important because this is the time that the body adapts to the stress of exercise and the real training effect takes place. Recovery also allows the body to replenish energy stores and repair damaged tissues. Exercise or any other physical work causes changes in the body such as muscle tissue breakdown and the depletion of energy stores (muscle glycogen) as well as fluid loss.

Short and Long-Term Recovery: Keep in mind that there are two categories of recovery. There is immediate (short-term) recovery from a particularly intense training session or event, and there is the long-term recovery that needs to be build into a year-round training schedule. Both are important for optimal sports performance.

Short-term recovery, sometimes called active recovery occurs in the hours immediately after intense exercise. Active recovery refers to engaging in low-intensity exercise after workouts during both the cool-down phase immediately after a hard effort or workout as well as during the days following the workout. Both types of active recovery are linked to performance benefits.

Getting quality sleep is also an important part of short-term recovery. Make should to get plenty of sleep, especially if you are doing hard training. Long-term recovery techniques refer to those that are built in to a seasonal training program. Most well-designed training schedules will include recovery days and or weeks that are built into an annual training schedule. This is also the reason athletes and coaches change their training program throughout the year, addcrosstraining, modify workouts types, and make changes in intensity, time, distance and all the other training variables.

Adaptation to Exercise: The Principle of Adaptation states that when we undergo the stress of physical exercise, our body adapts and becomes more efficient. It’s just like learning any new skill; at first it’s difficult, but over time it becomes second-nature. Once you adapt to a given stress, you require additional stress to continue to make progress.

Sleep Deprivation Can Hinder Sports PerformanceIn general, one or two nights of poor or little sleep won’t have much impact on performance, but consistently getting inadequate sleep can result in subtle changes in hormone levels, particularly those related to stress, muscle recovery and mood. While no one completely understands the complexities of sleep, some research indicates that sleep deprivation can lead to increased levels of cortisol (a stress hormone), decreased activity of human growth hormone (which is active during tissue repair), and decreased glycogen synthesis. Other studies link sleep deprivation with decreased aerobic endurance and increased ratings of perceived exertion.

Balance Exercise with Rest and Recovery: It is this alternation of adaptation and recovery that takes the athlete to a higher level of fitness. High-level athletes need to realize that the greater the training intensity and effort, the greater the need for planned recovery. Monitoring your workouts with a training log, and paying attention to how your body feels and how motivated you are is extremely helpful in determining your recovery needs and modifying your training program accordingly.

 

SOURCE: X 

Back at the gym

Standard

After 4 days away it felt good to be back at the gym!! Also yesterday was my rest day and a sort of treat day where I ate cakes, chocolate, cream, salted nuts etc etc
  So today i was filled with energy. And today was chest workout! This is only me second time having an official chest day (I’ve never liked training chest, but it has now become my favourite! → Can already feel the DOMS!!)
   It was my first time trying cable flies, cable pull over  and even incline flies (i feel like such a newbie!) but it all went well. Even if i had to use the lightest weights – i have to start somewhere. And i wanted to focus on technique!

My workout also contained lots of push ups, though due to my ankle i have to do them all on my knees, which is a bit upsetting. hahah! But soon I’ll have full movement with my ankle again!

image

image

Rest day and breakfast buffet

Standard

Today is my rest day but as i woke up at 7am and no one else was awake i decided to go out for a short walk and breathe some fresh air and stretch my legs. Especially as most of today will be spent in a car – in the boiling heat, back to our home. As we have spent the week out in a summer cottage!!!

This morning when i got back from my walk i placed myself in the kitchen and began preparing a breakfast buffet for the family!

Pancakes, strawvberries, cream, cake, fruit, eggs, bread etc :) My favourite foods all in once place!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stretching tips

Standard

Stretching is super important however its something i easily forgvet about or dont really prioritize, but the last few days ive made sure to stretch after each workout as this will also help me regain my flexibility!!

So dont forget to stretch, even if its just 5 minutes!!

 

I made a thing about stretching! Some of the images are hard to see, but if you click on them they should produce a larger image!

Sources:

  1. http://www.humankinetics.com/excerpts/excerpts/the-importance-and-purpose-of-flexibility
  2. http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/stretching_benefits.asp
  3. http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness_articles.asp?id=103

Image sources that aren’t mine (the three routines):

  1. http://www.letstalkandwalk.com/ten-great-reasons-to-stretch/
  2. http://tonedbellyplease.tumblr.com/post/56373085566/whats-this-another-bunny-yoga-sequence-from
  3. http://www.sportsscience.co/flexibility/whole-body-stretching-routine/

TIPS! Sale on Questbars and Jacked fuel

Standard

To all my Swedish readers i thought i would tips you that right now there is a sale at MMsports.se where you can buy Jacked fuel for 10kr instead of 20kr (i.e 50% sale!!!!) and buy a whole Questbar box for 192kr instead of 300kr ;) Is that a sale or what??!!

I am definitely going to click home some more Jacked fuel (Especially the strawberry & kiwi flavour!) and some questbars :) (Can never have though, right? :))

questbars

jacked fuel

Click HERE for questbars and HERE for jacked fuel :)

 

Morning powerwalk and improvised breakfast

Standard

This morning when the sun woke me up i put on my workout gear and went out for a walk… wasnt so fast or long because of my ankle but it was still really nice to walk in the sun and just listen to podcasts.

For my Swedish readers i listen to Body Podcast best thing to do when you are doing cardio and easily get bored. I have learnt so much from their podcasts :)

When i got back it was then time for an improvised breakfast as we didnt have any oatmeal or flour.. But i used what we had and made a sort of sweet egg cake(?). (Eggwhites & coconut milk – put into the microwave) topped with cottage cheese, soy yoghurt & strawberries & afterwards added coconutmilk. & 2 eggs on the side to get energy and healthy fats.

This meal contained little carbs and energy which isnt optimal for me as i have such a high energy need, but this was the best i could do with the little ingredients we had at home! But i am going to make sure to fill up on energy for the rest of the day!

Not every meal can be perfect or be the way you want it to be, but you just got to make the best of the situation :)

 

 

The worst diet tips

Standard

There are so many bad diet tips and myths out there but hopefully with the info below you will realise that healthy fats is actually good, you dont have to go on low carb diets or go on low cal diets to lose weight or fat. Dont believe everything you read… i mean, go Google some of these myths/tips and see whether they are actually right or wrong!