5 Common Weight Lifting Mistakes to Avoid
Understanding how to properly lift weights is critical to reaching your fitness goals safely. If you’re making common weight lifting mistakes, your workout sessions aren’t going to be nearly as effective, and they could even be potentially dangerous. In this handy guide, we’re going to cover five strength training mistakes that are made quite frequently, as well as solutions so you can proceed with confidence.
1. You’re Not Setting Goals
In order to maximize the effectiveness of every moment spent at the gym, it’s important that you have a plan in mind. After all, you don’t want to be wandering around the gym picking up random weights and hoping for the best. Targeting specific muscle groups and setting goals is the key to short and long-term results that last.
One of the most common weight lifting mistakes is targeting vanity muscles, neglecting other critical parts of your body. Choose one day to work on your core, another for legs, and another for arms. When you leave your home to go to the gym, have a solid plan and stick to it. Track your exercises, and try to continually outdo yourself.
If you’re reading about how to properly lift weights, you’ve probably already started hitting the gym regularly, or you’re at least thinking about it. One of the biggest obstacles to overcome is finding motivation to really push yourself. When you have clear goals in mind, it becomes much easier to find that extra push you need. Instead of stopping when you’re tired, you stop when you’ve fulfilled your quota.
2. You’re Not Warming Up Properly
A proper warm-up is absolutely essential. If you don’t warm up, you’re putting yourself at risk of serious injury, plus you’re not going to be able to perform to the best of your ability. Not warming up for long enough or at all is one of the most common weight lifting mistakes, and it’s also one of the most potentially harmful ones.
In the world of weightlifting, a light stretch isn’t going to cut it. You need to embrace a dynamic warmup that prepares your muscles for the exertion to come. You may know how to properly lift weights, but if your warmup isn’t up to par, it’s only a matter of time until you run into some serious issues.
Here are some warmup exercises and stretches to get your blood flowing, loosen up your muscles, activate your central nervous system, and and minimize the risk of injury:
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- Jumping rope
- Jumping Jacks
- Forward leg swings
- Sideways leg swings
- Hip extensions
- Hip rotations
- Spiderman steps
- Arm rotations
- Shoulder rotations
3. You’re Working Out Alone
Sure, there’s nothing wrong with the occasional solo session to the gym, but working out with a partner can really help to maximize your efforts. Out of all the common weight lifting mistakes, this is the one that can really bring you down. After all, if you’re not having fun while you work out, you’re naturally going to do it less and less. It doesn’t matter if you know how to properly lift weights if you’re not doing it in the first place.
Lifting with a partner is one of the best ways to boost accountability and motivation. After all, some days you’re just not going to feel like working out. If you make plans with another person, you’re obligated to fulfill them. Exercising with a partner also adds some friendly competition and comradery to the mix, making your experience more enjoyable and productive. You can also learn techniques from each other.
Additionally, having a partner with you makes every session much safer. You never know when you’re going to need someone to spot you. One of the common weight lifting mistakes is not respecting the potential danger of the sport. Even if you’ve lifted a certain amount before, that doesn’t guarantee you’re going to be able to handle it the next time. You never know when you’re going to need a partner to lend a hand.
4. You’re Pushing Too Hard
Yes, sometimes you need to push through the pain. However, you also need to listen to it. Another one of the most common weight lifting mistakes is mistaking your body’s signals to stop as a sign to push harder. Pain is a natural part of the bodybuilding process, so differentiating between pain signals can be tough.
A good rule of thumb is that if you notice excessive pain, especially in one particular side, it’s a good idea to put that exercise on the back burner. Or, if you notice that recovery takes much longer than usual with a particular exercise, you may need to rethink it. Your body may not be ready for those exercises yet, or you may not be doing them properly.
5. You’re Not Taking Supplements
The right supplements can elevate your workouts to new heights previously unattainable. There are plenty of legal, safe supplements on the market that empower you to achieve and surpass your goals. However, not all supplements are equal, and one of the most common weight lifting mistakes is not researching your supplements properly.
Supplementation for strength training is a personal thing, so spend some time researching your options so you can find a regimen that fits your goals and expectations. Creatine is one of the most popular options out there, as it maximizes productivity, power output, strength, and performance. Amino acids can also boost pump and help with recovery.
Whey protein powder is another common choice for bodybuilders, as it helps you to slim down by reducing your appetite and boosting your metabolism. Plus, protein is the main component in your muscles. Knowing how to properly lift weights and choose supplements are the first steps you should take on your lifting journey, so don’t wait to dive in.
Contact Us to Learn More
There are plenty of other common weight lifting mistakes out there, so don’t hesitate to talk to a professional for advice on making your workouts safer and more effective. For advice on selecting the right supplements, or to place an order, please feel free to email our experts at [email protected], or give us a call at 512-394-7995. Reach your fitness goals with Bare Performance Nutrition.