Fitness: Common Workout Mistakes

Picture1DON’T SKIP THE STRETCHES – Even if you’re not as flexible as the person beside you, it’s still really important that you spend time stretching. To get the most from your session, don’t hold your stretch in a conventional position – change the angle and range of movement. For example if you’re on all fours and stretching your back, why not extend one alternate leg and arm to benefit your legs too? You’ll soon notice the increased levels of tension in different muscles.

DON’T OVER DO IT
If you’ve had a couple of week without training you shouldn’t expect to stroll back into the gym and be able to train as long and as hard as before. Pick up where you left off lifting weights and you’ll feel the pain of over doing it over the next few days. Focus instead on varying the types of exercise you do and working on different muscle groups and challenging your whole body. You should always start slowly, doing simple exercises and lifts to establish a base level of fitness, concentrating carefully on the correct technique, and gradually increasing the complexity and number of sets until you’re back to your original fitness level.

DON’T JUST USE LIGHT WEIGHTS
to see improvement in your body shape, it’s important that you don’t just simply push the same low level weights for a high number of repetitions over several weeks. Do 10 sets of 3 reps with a heavier weight instead of 3 sets of 10 with a lighter one. This will get you used to holding a lighter load and make your body change faster.

DON’T PLOD ALONG
We know interval training boosts metabolism and is great for fat burning, but it’s also a really time-efficient way of working out. Pounding away for 40 minutes on a treadmill or cross trainer may work briefly for newbies but unless you run faster and longer each time you head out you won’t see the difference. Just two weeks of high intensity training improves your aerobics capacity as much as six to eight weeks of endurance training.

DON’T SQAT UP THROUGH YOUR KNEES
Squats may appear to be simple but good technique will not only protect your knees it will also tone your bottom, legs and abs, and will help you to burn more calories. You shouldn’t drop lower than 45 degrees in a swat and you need to drive back up through your hips – not your knees! Coming back up through your knees places a lot of pressure on your knee joints and makes your quad muscles work really hard. Instead work your glutes and hamstrings as you come up to standing. Get this right and you’ll be doing one of the best exercises for training your whole body.

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