Nobody has the time to slow down these days; we’re all in a rush to get things done. I bet you’re skim-reading this on your way to a meeting as well. We rush our way through lunch, we make a dash when making love (tsk tsk!) and we speed through our workout sessions at the gym, as well. While we’ll leave the former two for you to take care of, the latter is on us to help you with. Slowing down in the gym isn’t just recommended by personal trainers so they can pinch more money off your sweat sessions, but it’s also vital for you to get the most of your workouts.
There’s so much mechanism and theory that goes behind a basic bench press, some that might seem obvious, but often ignored due to the superficialities of the gym.?? So gentleman, here are 10 classic newbie errors you need to avoid making… starting now:
SPENDING TOO MUCH TIME IN THE LOCKER ROOM
Ask yourself this – you just had a super sweaty session that did wonders for your self-emancipation, now do you really want to spend another half hour post a sweat session amidst a sea of naked men? Yep, thought so. Do everyone a favour around you; spray some deodorant, splash some water on your face and go home for a shower (unless you’re heading for a date straight after, in which case, shower please).
WAITING AROUND FOR EQUIPMENT
If you’re spending more time waiting around for the chin-up bar station, than doing the said exercise, you may need to rethink your workout time of the day. Alternatively, find something else to do if your machine is occupied, don’t just waste time.
RELYING TOO MUCH ON THE WEIGHT MACHINES
Weight machines are a great starting point for beginners or if you want to lift a large amount, but if you have been doing weight training for years, move on. Machines don’t challenge the muscle as much as free weights do, in addition they could promote bad technique if not monitored. Use free weights instead, as they activate more muscles and promote natural movement.
WARMING UP THE WRONG WAY
Useless warming up on a stationary bike or the rowing machine is the worst way to start a workout, and quite frankly, you’re just wasting your time by doing so. If it’s your chest day, then get the blood flowing in the chest area by doing the exercise you’re about to do either with bodyweight or lighter weights. Don’t unnecessarily brisk walk, as it’s important to warm up the body part you’re about to train, otherwise you’ll risk injuring yourself.
DOING THE SAME EXERCISE ROUTINE EVERY WEEK
Too comfortable in your weekly routine? Chances are you’re getting zero benefits from your workout. Psychologists claim that muscles take six weeks to get used to a routine, and once that time is crossed, they’re not challenged to a greater extent. Keep changing your workout programme every six-eight weeks to observe constant progress.
TREATING BASIC CRUNCHES AS AN AB WORKOUT
An exercise that’s been around since the days of VCR and neon-coloured leg warmers, crunches should have better been left back in the ‘80s. While known to be a traditional abs exercise, most people do crunches incorrectly, resulting in injuring their neck and not even engaging their abdominal muscles. Instead, hold a plank for 60 seconds x 3 sets and do some dynamic abdominal exercises like the bicycle, the mountain climber or the Pilates One Hundred.
TAKING TOO MANY BREAKS BETWEEN SETS
We’re all guilty of taking too many breaks in-between sets, be it with an extended water break or changing music on the iPod. These breaks between sets, if not timed efficiently, can slow down your metabolism and fat burning process. Time your rest breaks as per the training you’re doing on the day.
TAKING SELFIES IN THE MIRROR
Your hard work might be visibly paying off, bravo for you, but that doesn’t give you the passport to selfie-land. It’s vain, not gentlemanly and no one on your Instagram feed cares for your quad muscles.
SOCIALISING WITH FELLOW REGULARS
Sure it’s important to speak to others about their fitness regimen and get inspired but remember the more chatting you do, the lesser time you’re spending on actually working out. Limit socialising to pre and post your workout.
CHECKING-IN AT YOUR GYM ON FACEBOOK DURING A WORKOUT
Don’t, just do not do this. By doing so, you’re not only making a mockery out of your sincerity towards your fitness, but also appearing as an A-level fool on social media. Nobody needs to know you’re at the gym 8am on a Sunday, because nobody really cares.