So you’ve made it to the gym… now what to do… here’s my advice for commencing your gym training and what to do post work out
Welcome back, if you haven’t read my first bit of advice on preparing for your first workout then I would strongly advise reading it and you can get it here.
- Warm Up
Ok so everyone has probably heard that you should warm up for sport although a lot of people neglect this at the gym. It is still a critical part of your workout. Start by doing dynamic stretching ideally, or static stretching if that’s not possible, make sure you stretch all the major muscle groups.
I would then suggest doing some aerobic exercise e.g. running or cycling. Don’t push it too hard as you’ll need some energy left for the rest of the workout but around 10 mins should be enough to fully warm up all the major muscle groups in your body. If you can’t or don’t want to do this part then skip this and go straight onto the next step below.
Note: Before doing any exercise involving lifting do a set of low weight reps for that movement. These are called “non-work lifts” which effectively warm up the specific muscles used in each lift.
- Big movements
To start out we want to focus on doing full body exercises, there are 5 big movements that target major groups of muscles. To start at the gym I would suggest mastering these 5 as they are the core exercise for any workout. The exercises are as follows:
To start do these on machines as the weight is much more controllable and you will not injure yourself by dropping dumbbells or other pieces of equipment.
- Form is everything
Form is essential for reducing injuries and activating the correct muscles whilst doing the exercises. I’ve included hyperlinks to videos explaining the correct form of each exercise above and be sure to take note.
So you’ve done one gym session, bravo! Just a couple of things to remember to do post workout.
You must now allow your body time to heal and build muscle, which means eat lots of proteins to help with muscle growth (this will be explained in a later post) and rest well i.e. sleep at least 8 hours. This will ensure your body heals in preparation for your next gym session.
So you now have a basic starter kit for going to the gym, in later posts I will look at the science behind gym exercises, how to continue to improve at the gym, different types of workout and a link to sample routines.
If you would like to know or have a question more please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Or drop a comment below any post and I will get back to you asap