There’s a lot of evidence that proves the efficiency of resistance training in the treatment and prevention of obesity. You can see some of the studies supporting this fact in the Journal of Obesity and Journal of Applied Physiology. Harvard Medical School also highlights that strength training benefits more than your weight loss program and lean muscle mass. This type of exercise also reduces the risk of osteoporosis by slowing down bone loss, which naturally increases with age.
However, strength training is not the type of exercise you can jump right into. Without proper preparation and guidance, you might injure yourself severely. You should also be aware that if you want to increase your lean muscle mass, your training must be complemented with a proper diet.
4 Strength Training Tips for Beginners That You Must Never Disregard
1. Start slow
If you are a complete beginner, you should start with body weight exercises only and work up to actually using weights. Even then you should always start a workout at a level lower than your current ability and gradually increase it. Note that you should never add more than 5% of weight at a time.
You are ready for the next level when you can do 30 reps with the current one without much trouble.
2. Eat your proteins
The main benefit of strength training for weight loss is the fact that it’s the most effective way to grow lean muscles. However, for this to be possible you’ll need an extra dose of protein.
The best foods for you are cottage cheese, chicken breasts, brown rice with legumes, salmon, and almonds. You’ll notice that many of these foods are also on the list of what to eat to lose weight. That’s because a high-protein diet is considered to be one of the most effective for weight management.
3. Stretch your muscles before and after a workout
In order to avoid injury and improve your results, you need to learn not only the basics of strength training for beginners but also stretching exercises. This practice will prepare your muscles, which will allow you to push yourself further.
Stretching after a workout will reduce soreness, which is sure to follow a session of resistance training. In fact, while your body gets used to the strenuous workouts, you should be ready to stretch a few times a day. This will help you recuperate faster. Practicing yoga will be a good idea, especially for deeply relaxing types like yin yoga.
4. Start with full-body workouts
The majority of strength training tips will tell you that you should work one group of muscles per session. At the least, have upper and lower body workouts on separate days. This is definitely the right strategy for bodybuilders who actively shape up their muscles and need maximum efficiency.
However, the truth is that this plan is too inefficient for beginners. While you still cannot take too much load, it’ll be best to maximize calorie burn of the practice. And a full-body workout is the best way to do this.
Stick to full-body workouts if you only have resistance training 2-3 times a week, regardless of your fitness level. This will allow you to achieve maximum weight loss and figure-shaping benefits. However, you should separate your workout into several exercise blocks that will work upper and lower body separately. That way, one part of your muscles can recover while you shape up the other.