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10 Most Common Fitness Mistakes
10 most common fitness mistakes
And how best to avoid them
We all want to start any new exercise regime with gusto and enthusiasm, but in many cases this excitable enthusiasm equates to a lack of results and ultimately the end of the journey. Here is a list of the most common habits and how you can avoid them without too much trouble.
Basic Principles of Fitness Training
Basic principles of fitness training
Helping you to achieve your fitness goals faster
Eating before and after a workout
Please don’t think that if you avoid eating before a workout you will burn fat, this isn’t a productive way to train, you will tire very quickly and more than likely feel sick in the process. Everybody is different, so you’ll have to work it out for yourself, but to give you a guide, ideally eat a small amount an hour before you train. If you don’t have time for this, a food with a high Glycaemic Index (GI) such as a banana prior to a workout, would be ideal. Eating after a workout is equally important to help repair the damage to your muscles and to restore your energy levels – low in fat, high in protein and carbohydrate is the solution.
Another very important issue is water, our body loses roughly 1.5 litres of water on a normal day, even more when we are active, it stands to reason that we need to replace this water, ideally 2 litres a day, try to drink regularly throughout the day rather than a litre when waking and a litre before going to bed, you’ll be peeing all night!
For more information read our article about the importance of water
Please be careful of your back, when we refer to neutral spine we are referring to each joint of the spine in a neutral position, neither arched forward or bent back. See the ‘Neutral Spine’ Factsheet for a more detailed description.
For more information read our article of how to find your neutral spine
One of the most commonly ignored principles and something which 90% of gym users either choose to ignore or don’t understand. EVERY exercise, ignoring sports specific training, should be done with control, meaning you should always use your muscles to perform the exercise, not momentum or gravity. The easiest way to remember this is the 2-second rule, each phase of the exercise should take 2 seconds. If you are performing a Push Up, it should you take you 2 seconds to go down and another 2 to come up.
Reps & sets
You will see these two mentioned a lot, 'Rep' is short for repetition and constitutes one full movement of both phases, for a push up – down and back up to starting position. A 'Set' is referring to a number of Reps, for example you may do 2 Sets of 15 Reps.
These basic principles are VERY important, following them will help you achieve your desired goals, so PLEASE keep referring back to them until you incorporate them into your training without having to think about them.'
Increasing Your Motivation to Exercise
Increasing your motivation to exercise
Geting yourself motivated
Getting yourself motivated to exercise can be one of the most important factors towards achieve your exercise goal; without motivation, what would ever drive you to hit the gym rather than stay at home watching your favourite DVD ? Getting motivated can be tough, but it definitely isn’t impossible. Here are just five ways to increase your motivation to exercise:
1 - Train with friends
Having a support group is absolutely invaluable to helping you achieve your goal-oriented program, exercise or otherwise. Having a support group that is going the distance with you, and experiencing the same sore muscles as you are, helps to remind you that you have bonded together with these friends for a purpose. It will also deter you from quitting because you won’t want to let your friends down.
2 - Set your goals
Knowing what you want to achieve and celebrating when you get there, is a well-proven motivator. Start by setting small goals up which lead up to your final, big goal, and take pride when you meet each small goal. Planning to lose weight? Set small goals to lose two pounds at a time, in certain amounts of time. Trying to bulk up? Measure those biceps and celebrate for every increase in the measurement until you reach your final goal. Keep in mind that goals don’t have to be body-based: goals to be able to run a mile, lift a certain weight, or just feel healthier are just as good!
3 - Measure your results
Now that you have set your goals, what more pleasure could you possibly get from anything other than seeing yourself reach each step? Keep a workout journal and record the details of every workout. The time you spent working out and the distance, difficulty, weight, and repetitions should be included where applicable. Keep note of how you feel each workout, and you may be surprised to look back in a few weeks and see how much further you are walking, how much more weight you are handling, and how much better you’re feeling! Make sure to note in the journal when you reach each small goal, so that you can look back on past celebrations, and look forward to the ones to come.
4 - Ask for encouragement
Just as working out with friends can motivate you, so can receiving support and praise from those who care, but aren’t joining you. Brag to your family, friends, and loved ones about your commitment to your new workout program, and especially brag and include them in the celebrations of reaching your goals! Having a positive network of friends around you will allow motivation to come in the form of praise, encouragement, and even the occasional push on those days when you just aren’t feeling it.
5 - Settle into a routine
A routine will make things a lot easier to keep your workout plan going for longer than a week. While you will want to break up the monotony once in a while by running a different course or trying a different...