Let’s face it the world of health and fitness is overflowing with information, so much so that it can be overwhelming especially for beginners. Many people end up quitting because they fall victim to simple mistakes that can be so easily avoided. Now we all make mistakes, and I have made many of the below so check them out and see how you can avoid them!
1) Thinking that you need to do cardio to lose fat before you weight train
- This is such a common phenomenon especially with women. I used to spend hours cycling and running and my body shape would not change shape. I became weak and was constantly tired.
- Cardio, when done for extended periods of time, can place a large amount of stress on the body. This stress can release cortisol which can lead to the body storing fat rather than burning it.
- Just doing cardio, combined with restrictive dieting can lead to a loss of lean muscle. This loss can lead to a decrease in your metabolic rate (no one wants that!)
- High intensity sprint training produces faster fat loss and helps build muscle.
- HITT training will help to improve your insulin sensitivity and you will burn more calories even once you have finished your workout.
2) You don’t have a plan
- I can’t stress the importance of this. I often see people wonder in the gym on a daily basis randomly choosing exercises, resting for ages in between sets and these are often the people who don’t make any progress.
- Progressive overload - in theory a simple concept yet so many overlook it. To put it simply it means continually pushing your performance each time you work out. For example, one week you may hit 65Kg for 8 reps on your deadlift so next week you would aim for either more reps or a heavier weight. This will all depend on the plan you are following. If you perform the same lifts with the same weight each time you work out you will never make progress.
- By following a plan, it will also keep you motivated as you will be able to see your progress over time.
- A plan also helps you to save time as it prevents you walking aimlessly around the gym deciding what to do.
3) Bad form
- By not performing lifts correctly you are not only risking injury, but you are also wasting time.
- Proper form means that you will be hitting the correct muscle and able to make progress quicker.
- If you are unsure of how to perform an exercise then speak with a trainer at your gym, watch tutorial videos or check my Instagram @fitfergo for exercise videos and tips ;)
- Use mirrors at the gym to check your form, film yourself or ask a workout buddy to check you are preforming your lifts correctly.
4) Not taking your diet seriously
- Diet is hard, if not harder than following a training plan but unfortunately the old saying is true you can’t out-train a bad diet.
- Sometimes when first starting to train many people can sometimes start eating more thereby offsetting any calories burned off.
- Consistency- try and stay consistent with your diet. In order to build muscle, you will need to keep your calories high rather than drastically cutting them. I would advise checking in with a trainer to help set your macros to match your training goals. There are also many resources on the internet that can help when it comes to figuring out your macros.
By taking on board the tips above you should hopefully be able to start making more progress on your fitness journey. Just remember to try and stay focused and consistent. Many people try to make their workouts and diet too complicated so keep it simple and stay on track.