Who am I and what have I done with my former self? I actually look forward to strength training workouts and shockingly sometimes rather do it than cardio. Yes, that’s coming from a self-professed cardio junkie 🙄 .
As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, I made theconscious decision to get my weight training on. I don’t know whether it’s because I’m still in the ‘honeymoon phase’ but I am loving it! Both the soreness and my upcoming holiday are motivation for me to stick to it. My arms feel like murder right now, don’t even get me started on my quads but it hurts SO GOOD!
Is it working? Appearance-wise, it’s too soon to tell. However I physically feel stronger and my run speeds have certainly improved. If you struggle to stick to regular weight training, here’s what has worked for me:
1) Limit your cardio and/or do it afterwards: I always thought that a ‘good’ workout included a minimum of 30 minutes cardio. On days I’m lifting, my cardio merely consists of the 8-minute walk to and from the gym and a 10 minute warm-up on the cross-trainer. Anything more unnecessarily wipes me out even before I’ve started lifting.
2) Go in with a plan: I’ve made a memo on my Blackberry with 4 or so different total body routines and I pick one at the gym. One of my main reasons for avoiding the weights section in the past is because I had no idea what to do.
3) Leave at least 30-45 seconds between each set, otherwise the 2nd/3rd set will be subpar!
4) Go big or go home: I rather lift 10-12 reps at maximum intensity rather than 20 reps with a lighter load. We (sorry if you’re a male reader ;)) don’t have enough testosterone to bulk up. Studies actually show that high weights/low reps burn more calories in the hours after training, which is key!
5) Leave a day in between weight training, unless you are training different body parts
6) Superset: I’m all about efficiency in the morning and this helps reduce my overall workout time. For example, rather than wait a minute between squats sets, I’ll do a set of dumbbell bench presses in between.
7) Don’t succumb to muscle soreness! Yes, the first few sessions will leave you screaming ‘bloody mercy’. You’ll vow to never do it again! But man up- a little bit of light cardio will get your blood circulating and relieve the pain :).
8 ) Always eat after: Many people find their appetite through the roof (ahem ;)) when they start weight lifting! Eating a combination of carbs & protein like yogurt & cereal or eggs on toast definitely helps reduce the hanger hunger pangs.
What motivates you to stick to a new workout program?