Weight training — the basics


The first official day of spring began not too long ago and the panic of getting in shape for summer is sinking in. For some that means getting outside to start running, picking up a new exercise routine, or looking for new classes. But some people are more interested in toning their muscles with weight training. Before getting started with weight training there are some things you need to know. Below are some basics tips and steps to beginning weight training, and ways to reach your goal without causing yourself injury.


Know your limits

Sometimes when you’re at a gym, or around other people who are more advanced, you may be inclined to add weight onto whatever machine you’re working at. Don’t do this. You will cause yourself injury by pulling a muscle, straining yourself, or just using ineffective form. Now this isn’t to say use too little weight. You want the amount of weight you use to force you to work, not your momentum behind it, and not so little work that you get nothing out of it. Rule of thumb: you should be able to pause for one second before lifting.


Be prepared to interact with others

This may come in the form of spotting others (that you are able to), or just watching their form, their routine, and asking questions about how to progress. Weight training is not as simple as an at-home workout video; you need to ask if you’re doing things correctly, and you should always ask for help.


Get rid of expectations

Machines are not the only thing that can help build strength! Grab some dumbbells.

Odds are there won’t be a line, and you may actually get more out of them than certain



Check your posture

This is super important. If you feel that you might not be doing something correctly check

how you’re standing; stand up straight. Make sure you keep your abs tight, your

shoulders back, and chest out for the best possible results.


Take care of yourself, and the gym

Make sure to stay hydrated! Bring extra water with you, and remember to keep your

body fully hydrated while working with weight training. You’re putting your body through a lot, it needs help! Also, make sure you have a towel with you. You’re going to be

sweating and the kind thing to do is to wipe away whatever sweat you leave for the

person using the machines after you (it’s also handy to wipe the sweat away from you).


These are very basic things to think about when starting weight training, so remember to do further research. But, the benefits of weight training are worth the work; your muscles, tendons, heart, blood pressure, and overall well-being will thank you! Good luck!