Today is my six year anniversary as a personal trainer. And I have been working out and creating workouts long before that. I am telling you this, so you know I have racked up a lot of hours at the gym. And I can’t tell you how anxious I get when I see people make the mistakes I am going to go over today.
These mistakes will put your body at risk for injury. Making these fitness errors will also prevent you from reaching your goals! If you want to lose weight, build muscle, and just feel really good – avoid doing these ten things.
Skipping the weights | The more muscle you have in your body, the faster you can burn fat. So why would you want to avoid the weight room? Sure, running on a treadmill seems less intimidating than those big weights, but adding resistance training to your routine will increase your metabolic rate… which is a good thing!
Lifting too much too soon | Lifting heavier weights than you are ready for can lead to serious injuries. Ease into the heavier weights. You need to be able to do all reps with perfect form. If your form breaks, you are lifting too much weight. When I learn I new exercise, I always do it without weights first. Once I know my form is perfect, I start adding resistance five pounds at a time. This is the way I train my clients, and it is effective and safe for everyone I have met. Be smart, be safe.
Learning by copying other exercisers | If you aren’t sure how a machine works or the proper form for an exercise, ask a certified personal trainer. If you are afraid to do that – watch a video produced by qualified fitness professionals and look at yourself in a mirror to make sure you are doing the exercises the same way as them. Don’t just pick out some man at the gym to mimic because he could very easily be doing an exercise wrong himself. It’s important for your safety to know what you are doing is being done with correct form. I have compiled an Exercise Library that will instruct you on how to do all MFit exercises properly. If you are interested in using this Library, sign up for the MFit Membership today!
“I exercised so I can eat this” | You can’t out-exercise a bad diet. It’s that simple. Yes, working out means you can eat a little bit more, but it doesn’t mean you can eat like crap. Abs are made in the gym but seen in the kitchen.
Believing crunches will give you a 6-pack | Crunches need to be paired with many other exercises to give you good looking abs. To get a toned stomach you need to burn the fat off with cardio (steady state, HIIT, plyometrics), build strength in your whole body and do isolated core training. If a 6-pack is your goal, you should consider doing my 4-Week Flat Abs Plan. It is structured to give you the best results in just a month, and trust me – it works!
Spending hours at the gym | Just because you worked out for a long time does not mean you got a good workout in. There is no point in working out if you’re just going through the motions. If you are spending hours at the gym every time you go, try shortening your workouts and pushing yourself a little harder in the time you have.
Expecting immediate results | Real results don’t happen overnight. Give it time. If you want real progress that you can maintain, it’s actually better to have slow and consistent progress.
Skimping on a warm-up | Whether or not you warm-up is the difference between a good and a bad workout. So many people rush through or skip warming up, and that’s not okay. Read THIS blog post of mine for more information on why you need to warm-up and how you should warm-up.
Never switching up your routine | Your body gets used to exercises. You never want to start feeling so comfortable with an exercise routine that you don’t even have to try anymore. Your body will start to plateau if you let yourself get to that point. So, continuously switch up your workouts to constantly keep your body challenged.
Focusing too much on calorie burn | Yes, if your goal is weight loss, calorie burn is important. But if work hard and get your heart rate up – results will happen. If you obsess over the calories, you will go crazy. Give it your all and don’t worry so much!