Intermittent Fasting: A Beginner’s Guide to the Fasting Diet
Fasting is something that’s played a key role in virtually all of the world’s major religions and dates back millions of years. Today, though, while fasting is still observed for many religious purposes, it’s become a new lifestyle that helps individuals lose weight, have more energy, and fight disease.
While fasting isn’t a new concept, intermittent fasting is something that has emerged in the past few years. It has gained popularity due to the incredible benefits it offers against signs of aging and disease.
Keep reading to learn about intermittent fasting and why this may want to be a lifestyle change you make.
Understanding Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is a process that involves cycling in and out of periods where you eat and don’t eat. While people do experience (often significant) weight loss with this eating schedule, it’s not as much of a diet plan as it is a lifestyle choice that provides a wide array of health benefits.
There are several methods used with intermittent fasting. These include:
The 5:2 Method
This is the method that allows you to eat normally for five days a week. The two days after are for fasting, but you still eat. The goal is to keep calorie intake on this day between 500 and 600.
The Eat-Stop-Eat Method
This method is a bit different. With this, you restrict all food for a period of 24 hours. This is repeated two to three times per week.
The 16/8 Method
Here, you consume all your daily calories within a shortened period of time. In most cases, you eat in a period of six to eight hours.
The remaining 14 to 16 hours during the day, you fast. This is the method that can be done daily, or several times a week.
Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
When you switch to intermittent fasting, it will expand your limits while boosting your performance in several ways. Some of the specific benefits offered by this way of eating include:
- Increase energy
- Reduce bad cholesterol
- Protect against various neurodegenerative diseases
- Boost weight loss
- Promote longevity
- Reduce insulin resistance
- Promote cellular repair
As you can see, the benefits are vast. As a result, this may be something you should consider trying.
Tips to Make the Most of Intermittent Fasting
While not eating for specific amounts of time alone offers health benefits, if you want to make the most of this lifestyle choice, there are a few other tips you need to use.
It can’t be a free-for-all when you do eat, as this is going to negate many of the benefits this way of eating offers. Some additional tips include:
- Avoid refined grains and sugars (choose low-carb snacks when possible)
- Don’t snack between meals
- Remain active
- Avoid snacking or eating in the evening and at night
By using these tips, the results of your intermittent fasting will be much more evident.
Be Healthier and Happier with Intermittent Fasting
As you can see, there are several options to consider if you are interested in intermittent fasting. As a result, you aren’t going to feel as deprived or hungry while following this way of eating.
Do you want to make a change to be healthier and happier? If so, let us help! Visit the 21 Day Transformation Challenge to learn more.
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By Midwestern Technology — 3 years ago
17 Fun Weight Loss Rewards to Help Keep You Inspired
According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study conducted a few years ago, almost 50 percent of Americans are trying to lose weight at any given time.
Some people are attempting to shed a few pounds to make themselves healthier. Others are doing it in an effort to look better in their clothes. And there are, of course, some moms looking to bounce back from pregnancy and lose baby weight.
There are so many different reasons to lose weight, but finding the motivation to do it can be tough. It’s why you should consider treating yourself to weight loss rewards throughout your journey.
Exercise rewards will make you more motivated than ever before to lose as much weight as you can. They’ll also give you something to look forward to as you strive to lose weight.
Here are 17 rewards that are guaranteed to keep you inspired.
1. Purchase New Workout Gear
There are a lot of people who make the mistake of treating themselves to new workout gear as soon as they commit to getting back in the gym to lose weight. They think it’ll help them take their commitment more seriously.
Resist the urge to do this and wait until after you’ve established a routine before buying new workout gear. It’ll prevent you from buying gear that you don’t actually need. It’ll also allow new workout gear to serve as one of your very first weight loss rewards.
2. Treat Yourself to a Massage
Is your goal to completely transform the look of your body by losing weight? This 9 Week Challenge will provide you with everything you’ll need to make your weight loss dreams a reality in a short amount of time.
You will, however, find that you’re pretty sore during the first few weeks of working out. Your muscles are going to ache, and your entire body will feel drained at times.
This is not necessarily a bad thing! It’s actually a sign that your body is responding to the workouts you’re doing and getting into better shape. But that won’t make you feel any better when you’re very sore.
A massage can take care of the soreness and inflammation you might feel following a string of hard workouts. It’ll also improve your blood flow and make your muscles feel looser than they would otherwise.
Treat yourself to a nice massage to get your body feeling its best again. This will motivate you to get back into the gym quicker.
3. Take a Beach Vacation
A study that was done a few years ago revealed that about one-third of Americans would rather take a trip to the dentist’s office than put on a bathing suit. They simply can’t stand the way they look in a swimsuit.
This won’t be a problem for you once you start losing a bunch of weight. You’re going to be excited about slipping into a swimsuit for the first time in a long time.
Circle a date on your calendar and tell yourself that you’re going to take a beach vacation at that time. You’ll feel an unprecedented amount of motivation every time you go to the gym when you use beach vacations as exercise rewards.
4. Try a New Hairstyle
Once you start losing weight, you’re going to have to get used to hearing, “You look so much different!”, every time you bump into someone who hasn’t seen you in a while. They’ll be blown away by your new look.
Why not start getting used to it now by trying a new hairstyle? Whether you decide to chop all your hair off or just make a small change to it, it’ll help you prepare for all the looks you’re going to be getting when the pounds start coming off in the coming weeks.
5. Participate in a Recreational Sports League
There’s a reason why about 80 percent of American adults don’t get enough exercise on a regular basis. It’s because they don’t enjoy the monotony that comes along with going to the gym day after day after day after…well, you get the point.
When you spend almost every day in the gym, it can start to get boring after a little while. So why not spice things up by finding fun ways to exercise in between gym workouts?
One good way to do it is by participating in a recreational sports league. There are adult leagues all over the country that would be more than happy to welcome you into the mix.
You can sign up for a sports league on your own and meet some new friends or team up with your existing friends to start your own team. Either way, it’ll allow you to blow off some steam while taking part in something you enjoy.
6. Get a Tattoo
We’ve already talked about how you’re going to want to show off plenty of skin once you begin losing weight. Going to the beach and sitting by the pool will start to become the norm for you when you’re not carrying around a bunch of extra weight.
And while you’re showing off your skin for the first time in a while, won’t it be great to show off a new tattoo (or two?!), too? Tattoos make great weight loss rewards for those who are ready to start showing off their muscles more in the future.
Studies have shown that about 40 percent of Americans now have tattoos. Additionally, 25 percent have more than one tattoo. Treat yourself to some fresh ink today and use it to remind yourself of how far you’ve come so far.
7. Pick Up New Running Sneakers
Most fitness experts will tell you that it’s smart to replace your running sneakers every 300 to 500 miles. That might seem like a long time in between sneaker replacements, but it’ll sneak up on you when you’re knocking out a few miles at a time.
If your current sneakers are on the older side, throw them in the trash and replace them with new ones as one of your exercise rewards. You’ll love how they fit, and you’ll cut down on your chances of suffering feet and leg injuries thanks to your new sneakers.
8. Have Updated Headshots Taken at Work
Do you cringe every time you look at the photo on your work ID? Or do you have a professional headshot on your company’s website that makes you want to quit tomorrow just so that they’ll take the picture down?
Now is the perfect time to do something about it. Walk into work as soon as you can and ask for a new photo to be taken of you. As long as you like the weight loss progress you’ve made thus far, it’ll give you an opportunity to show off how far you’ve come.
9. Splurge on a Mani-Pedi
The best weight loss rewards are the ones that allow you to pamper yourself. We already talked about the benefits of getting a massage, but there are other ways you can pamper yourself when you’re not lying down on the massage table.
Splurging on a manicure and pedicure is one terrific option. You’ll feel so relaxed after heading down to the salon to get both your fingernails and your toenails pampered.
And if you need more rewards than just that? Go all out and visit a local spa for a mani-pedi along with a facial and whatever other spa treatments they have to offer.
10. Enroll in Cooking Classes
Working out is obviously one of the keys to losing weight. You need to burn as many calories as you possibly can in the gym to see the pounds start to fall off.
But outside of working out, it’s also important for you to eat healthily. This starts with finding the right foods for your specific body type and also includes learning how to prepare the proper meals in your kitchen.
To make it easier for you to diet, consider enrolling yourself in some cooking classes so that you can learn how to cook things that will taste good and be good for you. This is one of the weight loss rewards that will continue rewarding you for a long, long time.
11. Buy a Better Mattress
In addition to working out and eating right, there’s one other thing you’ll need to do to lose weight: Sleep! Sleep will allow your body to recover from your workouts and make losing weight easier on you.
The problem? Americans are becoming more and more sleep deprived by the year. Smartphones, Netflix, and all the other technological advances that have come along have made sleep expendable for some people. It’s why one-third of Americans don’t sleep enough.
Avoid being sleep deprived by buying yourself a better mattress. It’ll make you want to spend as much time in bed as you possibly can moving forward.
12. Invest in New Headphones
Are you still using the headphones that came with your smartphone to listen to music at the gym?
Put an end to that immediately and invest in high-quality headphones that will enhance your workout. Ideally, you should look for a pair of Bluetooth headphones that will sync up with your smartphone or, better yet, your smartwatch and make it easy to scroll through your workout playlist.
13. Put Together a New Playlist
Speaking of a workout playlist, you do have one of those, right?
If not, get on it immediately. There are hundreds of workout songs that’ll get you into the right frame of mind to work out harder in the gym.
Studies have shown that music can actually make it more fun to exercise. It can also motivate you to push yourself, which will ultimately lead to you losing more weight than you could have imagined.
14. Ask Friends to Take a Fitness Class
If your motivation levels have been low in the gym lately, think about making one of your weight loss rewards fitness classes with your friends. Whether you choose to take yoga classes, spin classes, or other types of classes, you’ll find that you get more out of your workouts when you’re in a group.
There are many benefits that come along with working out as part of a group. They include everything from increased socialization to lower stress levels. Give it a shot today.
15. Subscribe to a New Magazine
There is so much you can learn about making the most of your workouts right online. You don’t need fitness magazines anymore to obtain workout tips.
But if you still enjoy getting your hands on a magazine every now and then (maybe to bring along with you on your beach vacation?), subscribe to one of the many fitness magazines as one of your exercise rewards.
You can find tips on working out, eating right, sleeping, and so much more in these magazines. And if nothing else, looking at photos of other fit people will give you a kick in the butt and motivate you like never before.
16. Enjoy a Cheat Day
Sticking to a diet day in and day out is a tall task. It can start to feel like it’s going to be impossible to do it when there’s no end in sight. Enter: The cheat day!
Cheat days give you a chance to eat all the things you abstain from on a regular basis. You can chow down on pizza, brownies, and whatever else you miss eating when you’re dieting.
You shouldn’t go too crazy with your cheat days and end up slipping back into old habits. But if you indulge every now and again, it can actually help you stay on track as you work towards losing weight.
17. Take On a New Training Routine
After you spend a few months working out and lose a bunch of weight, it’s not uncommon to hit what’s called a “weight loss plateau.” It’s when you suddenly stop losing weight after dropping a bunch of pounds.
One way to combat a weight loss plateau is by trying a new training routine on for size. If you’ve been doing nothing but weight training, give cardio a try. Or if you’ve been doing nothing but running, try hitting the weights and see how it goes.
By simply switching up your workout, you can shake things up in your body and get it to start burning calories and shedding pounds again.
Start Using These Weight Loss Rewards Now
Losing weight takes a lot of hard work and sacrifice. But you also need to reward yourself from time to time to keep your motivation levels up.
The weight loss rewards listed here should give you all the motivation you’ll need to keep working hard in the gym and continue eating right. Work your way through them and reward yourself whenever you need a quick boost.
Contact us today to enroll in the 21 Day Transformation Challenge that you need to keep your weight loss goals on track.
By Midwestern Technology — 4 years ago
12 Brilliant Gym Tips For A More Efficient Workout
Do you think you’re wasting time at the gym? Efficient workouts equal fewer excuses. Here are some gym tips to help you trim the fat off your workout routine.
Do you workout regularly? If so, you’re already in an elite group.
According to new research, although more than 75% of people claim they want to get in shape and look great, only 31% actually make exercise a routine habit.
Yet, are you getting the most from your time at the gym? Do you leave with sweat dripping, adrenaline pumping and those exertion-fueled endorphins running in your veins? Or, are you still struggling to see the results you crave?
If it’s the latter, you’ve come to the right place. Today, we’re sharing 12 simple gym tips that can help you supercharge your workouts and bump up the ROI on that membership.
Ready to learn more? Let’s get started!
1. Start with a Plan
You walk into the gym and take a long look around. There are treadmills on one wall, ellipticals on another and a giant weightlifting area. It’s inspiring. It’s exciting. It’s also incredibly overwhelming.
You spend more than a few minutes figuring out which area you want to visit first and which part of your workout you want to prioritize.
Does this scenario sound familiar?
If so, try planning out your next gym workout. Before you even get in the car and head out, jot down what you want to focus on, how long you want to spend there and in what order you’re going to tackle it all.
Doing so not only helps you stay organized and start your workout quicker. It also makes sure your heart rate doesn’t drop as you spend time perusing the options. One way to ensure you’re always ready to go? Have a backup plan ready in case the machines you want are full.
2. Shorten and Strengthen Your Workouts
It seems like simple logic: The longer you workout, the better you’ll look and feel, right?
If your usual gym session includes exercising for an hour or two at a slow, moderate pace, it’s time to kick it up a notch. Studies show that interval training, or working out in smaller, 10-30 minute bursts with rests in between, is more beneficial than marathon sweat sessions.
Why? You’ll increase your heart rate, build your endurance and maximize your speed when you focus on working your body to its top capacity. When you go for longer, something has to give and it’s usually your body’s performance.
So, the next time you’re looking at the indoor track and dreading that five-mile stretch you’ve been doing, try tackling one mile instead and see how much more powerful you feel.
High-Intensity Interval Training
A popular way to add shorter, more powerful workouts to your gym routine is to try high-intensity interval training or HIIT training. Put simply, this is the method of dividing your overall workout into blocks of intense exertion along with designated times for rest.
Focus on exercises that get your heart rate and lungs working to their top capacity, and sustain the movements for a few minutes at a time. Of course, if you have any cardio or health concerns, talk to your doctor before trying a HIIT routine. It is also recommended against for those just starting out in their fitness routine.
3. Add Protein
After an especially exhausting workout, your muscles need to rebuild themselves. This is true for both cardio-centric exercises as well as strength-building ones. To amplify the results you’ll see and improve your body’s ability to bounce back, it can be helpful to add an element of protein into your post-workout meal or snack.
A simple protein shake, made with either whey or soy, is a great way to recharge and refuel after your time at the gym. You can also find protein bars and other snacks that make refilling on the go both simple and quick.
While you sip or munch, you’ll be helping your body repair any damage it sustained during your workout. You’ll also give your immune system a boost, rebuild your stored glycogen, and regrow your muscles. It’s a simple trick that can cap off a great session and help you see results quicker.
4. Pump the Right Tunes
It might sound unimportant, but the idea that the right music can affect your workout is backed by science.
While there is no one-size-fits-all playlist that will make you magically grow those muscles you want, your best bet is to stick to jams that make you feel seriously inspired. From the soundtrack to Space Jam to Madonna, anything goes. One rule? If it puts you to sleep or makes you want to cry, save it for another time.
Instead, invest in a great pair of workout headphones and turn up the dial on those energy-infused rockers that make you want to holler, howl and show your strength. Start the playlist while you’re on the way to the gym and let that feeling follow you.
5. Do a Digital Detox
One surefire way to get less from your workout? Hop off the treadmill every five minutes to respond to that group chat, take a picture of your gear or post on social media.
Not only are you allowing your heart rate to fluctuate as you momentarily disengage, but you’re also losing that valuable mental focus. If you must have your phone on you, activate airplane or vibrate mode. Otherwise, leave it in the locker room.
6. Know Your Weights
You might be tempted to grab the heaviest weight at the gym to push yourself and look cool, but take a step back from those dumbells.
Using a too-heavy weight is just as ineffective as using one that’s too light. When you try to lift a boulder, chances are you can’t do many repetitions, if any at all. The ones you are able to manage are likely not executed properly.
On the other hand, a too-small weight isn’t activating your muscles effectively. The key is to find that sweet spot. Ideally, you want a weight that requires effort to lift and move but isn’t uncomfortable to curl.
It might take some trial and error but look for one that allows you to finish out your rep set. You want to challenged and struggling just a bit on the last few reps, but not throughout.
7. Journal Your Workouts
Just as a dieter monitors what he or she eats, if you want to get the most from your gym exercises, it’s helpful to write down your progress.
Keep track of when you exercised, what you did and how you felt. You might keep your notes in an old-fashioned notebook or on a fitness app. Either way, be specific. Note how many reps you did, what weights you used and any other important details.
When you go back the next time, take a look at your notes and see where you can push yourself a little. Add a few more reps, use a slightly heavier weight or incorporate a new machine you haven’t used yet.
8. Focus on Compound Movements
Wondering what to do at the gym? Your best bet is to find exercises that pull double or triple duty.
Known as compound movements, these are ones that work for more than one muscle group at a time and at least two of your joints. While there is a time and place for bicep curls and other routines that laser-focus on one area, compound workouts are a great way to maximize your time.
As you do these moves, you’ll build muscle mass, exert more energy, and burn more calories. Not sure where to start? Try a simple lunge or squat. Or, take that bicep curl a step further and flow into a shoulder press.
9. Find an Exercise You Love
It sounds simple, but one of our best workout tips is to find a workout routine you actually enjoy doing. If you aren’t passionate about something, your initial enthusiasm will only take you so far. After that, you’re just going through the motions, often to no avail.
Our interests and goals change over time, so don’t be afraid to reexamine your routine every so often to make sure it’s still enjoyable.
Whether you love running, biking, hiking, lifting or anything in between, find a workout that brings you alive both physically and mentally. That’s the only way to ensure you stick with it in the long run.
Still, need a little motivation to summit that mountain ahead of you? Try reaching out to a personal challenge coach who can encourage you to push ahead on your fitness journey.
10. Fine-Tune Your Form
All the repetitions in the world won’t give you results if you’re not doing them correctly. While it’s fine to add on more weight as you grow stronger, make sure you’re not sacrificing your form as you do so.
This is where a personal trainer can be valuable. Work with one at your gym to make sure you’re performing each exercise the right way. Doing so can help you prevent injury and safely engage all the muscles you’re supposed to be working.
While you’re still learning, stick with a lighter weight and focus on maneuvering it before you build up to a higher level.
11. Train Your Brain
Exercise is as much about mental strength as it is about physical. To this end, it’s helpful to focus your mind on each part of your workout as you’re going through it. Think about the muscles you’re activating, your posture, and the form you’re trying to maintain.
As you do so, you’ll automatically become more invested in the routine rather than just going through the motions. If you find yourself spacing out, talking with others around you or watching the television screen too often, take a break to re-center.
12. Get More Rest
If you think your muscles are working during your workout, you should see them afterward. As your body repairs itself from the exertion and strain you put on it, this is a valuable and important time in your fitness regimen.
If you’re pushing through back-to-back workouts without resting in between sessions, you’re denying your body that vital time. It’s no wonder, then, that you haven’t seen the immediate results you’re looking for. As your muscle fibers are put to the test, they develop small tears that must heal to grow.
Moreover, the next time you visit the gym, you’re not only sleep-deprived and sloppy, but you’re also setting yourself up for injury.
Though it might be against your nature to indulge in rest, it’s essential that you do so. If you suffer from insomnia or have a difficult time falling and staying asleep, it’s worth a call to your doctor to address any underlying health conditions that might be attributed to the issue.
Ace Your Next Workout With These Gym Tips
We all want to make the best use of our time at the gym. It’s why we make the trek up there, gear up and carve out space in our schedule to sweat. Yet, it’s frustrating to think that you can put so much into your workout and still feel dissatisfied with the results.
That’s where we come in.
Our team of coaches is dedicated to making sure you don’t run through your next workout aimlessly. We’ll work one-on-one with you to help you define, refine and achieve your fitness goals. From the foods you eat to the routines you perform, we understand that great health is a lifestyle, not a fad.
If you’re just getting started, Our 21 Day Body Transformation Challenge combines diet and exercise to transform your look. If you want to turn heads for the right reasons, find out more here.
By Midwestern Technology — 4 years ago
Work Harder, Get Stronger: How to Start Weightlifting
The secret to getting stronger isn’t much of a secret. It’s weightlifting. We’ll show you how to start weightlifting and begin your journey to a stronger you.
Weightlifting has been one of the most popular fitness methods, for good reason.
Weightlifting does more than bulk you up. Strength training has a myriad of benefits; you gain more strength, you burn fat, and you’re able to keep more fat off for a long time.
Here’s the catch: many newbies aren’t sure where to start. Here’s how to start weightlifting.
To PT or Not to PT
When a beginner starts their weightlifting journey, they often debate about hiring a personal trainer, or a PT.
There are many benefits of hiring a personal trainer. A trainer can identify your current fitness stance and fitness goals and can develop an effective weightlifting routine for you.
The Benefits of Hiring a Trainer
Beginners can easily get lost in the myriad of weightlifting machines, weight types, and lifting techniques. Trainers are experienced in all of these areas.
Trainers are also your best bet to ensure you lower your injury risk and are in correct form.
Personal trainers are also beneficial if you plan on competing in competitions or if you need to lose an exceptional amount of weight. Trainers can provide fitness and diet tips to get you in the best shape of your life.
Trainers also closely monitor your routine, your progress, and provide constant motivation for slackers.
When to Not Hire a Trainer
What if you have a decent amount of strength training experience but are simply altering your weightlifting regimen? You’ll still benefit from a trainer. But if you’re comfortable with lifting, you can try developing your own fitness routine.
More PT Information
If you have regular (once a week) personal training sessions on top of solo workouts for at least a year, you’ll gain enough education and comfort in your fitness routine.
While hiring a trainer is almost guaranteed to give you the results you want, by going out and conquering your fitness goals, you’ll likely still gain the results you want. So hiring a trainer is a choice that you should consider.
How Much to Lift?
The weight you lift depends on the results you want.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to lift extremely heavy to increase your strength, tone your body, and even bulk up.
Weights are separated into a few categories:
- Moderately Light
- Moderately Heavy
Here’s a more detailed explanation of each weight type.
These are weights you can pick up with ease. You won’t feel any strain and can even make it throughout your full set without feeling any tension.
Differentiating between moderately light and light weights are difficult at work. With moderately light weights, you should still be able to pick up the weight with ease. But at the end of your set, you’ll feel a little bit fatigued.
When you first lift a weight at moderate strength, you can easily lift the weight but you will have to use extra effort compared to the previous two weight types. You’ll likely feel fatigued after your set, but not completely exhausted.
This is where most people train. You’re able to pick up the weight but still feel like you need to make an effort for each rep. But you’re still able to achieve correct form and have a lower injury risk.
It’s ill-advised beginners lift heavy on their own without the aid of a trainer.
You’re not able to easily lift the weight and have to use all of your strength and effort to even do a rep. You’ll find doing each rep difficult and will feel completely exhausted after your set.
Which Weights Should You Lift?
For best results, you should lift all weights. Different workouts call for different weight types. You’ll also notice certain muscles can lift heavier than other muscles.
For example, you probably notice you can lift moderately heavy when you do bicep curls. But you have to decrease your weight significantly when you lift shoulders.
That’s because most people, men and women, are used to lifting with their arms and not lifting overhead.
The Different Types of Weights
When most beginners think of weightlifting, they usually only think of dumbbells and bars. While these are crucial weight types, there are many types of weights and they all have their benefits.
Here are the most basic weight types:
- Standalone weight plate (the weights that go on machines – you can also use these alone)
Which ones should you use? You’ll have to take your fitness goals and weight preferences into consideration. But beginners should try each weight type.
If you’re working legs, deadlift with barbells. When squatting, use kettlebells or a weight plate.
Then, use dumbbells for lunges. There’s a myriad of hamstring exercises you can do on the cables. There are also many machines that increase your leg strength, such as the leg press.
After you experiment with all weight types, you can substitute certain weight types with those you prefer.
Reps and Sets
“Reps” and “sets” appeared a few times in this article. As a beginner, you may not know what this teams. When you start weightlifting, you’ll realize how often you use this information.
A rep is each time you lift a weight. Reps are often combined with something called a set. Most weightlifters do two or more sets of a specific number of reps.
For example, let’s say you do 20 reps of ab crunches. You break the 20 reps up into two sets. This means when you do ab crunches, you do two sets of 10 reps.
How Many Reps and Sets?
Now that you know what reps and sets are, you’re probably wondering how many you should do.
Well, this depends on the workout and the weight you’re lifting.
Let’s make this easy and break up the reps-weight ratio in three categories: light, moderate, and heavy lifting.
Since heavy lifting requires lots of strength, several reps aren’t required for heavy lifting. But you won’t get results with light lifting unless you increase your reps.
Here are general numbers to remember:
- Light lifting: 40-50 reps
- Moderate lifting: 20-30 reps
- Heavy lifting: 5-10 reps
You can break the rep count in as many sets as you need. Unless you’re lifting heavy, most lifters do sets of 10-15 reps.
How Reps and Weight Affect Your Results
When you start lifting and make fitness friends, you’ll hear a ton of advice. Some people will tell you to lift lighter with more reps or lift heavier with fewer reps.
The truth is, both methods are effective. But every weightlifter is different.
Lifting heavy with fewer reps forces your body to use maximum strength. This results in quicker results; your strength will increase, you’ll bulk up, and get toned quickly.
But lifting only at your maximum not only increases your injury risk, but you’ll be less flexible. If you decide to jump into maximum lifting, go back and forth between heavy lifting and using lighter weights or resistance bands.
So you may think lifting lighter weights with more reps is the solution. But this depends on the results you want. If you want leaner and toned muscles, lifting light is the way to do it. You won’t bulk up or increase your strength as quickly.
This method is more challenging for beginners than they would expect. Lifting light requires endurance – something you develop when you gain experience lifting.
It’s easy to immediately feel fatigued after the 25 rep mark, especially when you’re supposed to reach 40 or 50 reps for one exercise.
No method is better than the other. It all depends on your weightlifting goals.
Creating a Routine
Finally, it’s time to create a routine. Many weightlifters focus on one area, such as arms or abs, in one day.
It’s also important to do cardio; have a cardio day or two each week and do about 10-15 minutes of cardio after lifting to burn more calories.
And never forget to stretch! Stretching decreases your risk of injury and you’ll improve your flexibility.
First, decide what you’re training. To start, you can divide your days between upper body (arms, chest, and back), core (abs) and legs (hamstrings, glutes, and hips).
After you’re comfortable lifting, you’ll know your muscle groups and can devote days to one or two specific muscle groups.
Then, take about five minutes and stretch out those muscles.
And now you can start lifting! To start out, don’t go too intense. Take about 15 or 20 minutes to lift.
End with a little bit of cardio. Once you become more experienced, you can stop post-workout cardio or replace it with light lifting or resistance bands. The goal is to burn extra calories but cool off from the intensity of weightlifting.
Now You Know How to Start Weightlifting
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