Today's blog is all about mistakes we make when we start training. Hopefully by shedding some light on a few things I can save you some time, effort and discomfort.
Death by comparison!
This is a recurring theme these days. You have to be aware of how you react to those around you. Comparison is great if it turns into some positive i.e. motivates you, educates you etc. But too many times I see the negative effects of people comparing themselves to others and putting people on a pedestal. Unless you're in the top 1% there is always going to be someone better, fitter, faster, leaner, sexier than you. You know how you don't get better? Having a negative reaction when you view the progress of others. Be aware of who and what you are comparing yourself to.
Sweatin' the small things!
I don't know how many times I've been asked about the absolute minutia of training before people have even strung together a couple of months of good hard training. It's great that you're interested but ultimately it's a quest for some unobtainable golden nugget that is going to give a quick fix. PED's aside (and even then) there isn't a quick fix, you've got to do your time in the trenches, and then some. Worry about the things you can control; training consistency, diet consistency, technique, sleep, hydration, staying off the *insert your weakness*. Supplements are normally the big one here. We all know someone who has that aha moment, decides it's time to get in shape and the first thing they do is go to the supplement store. I cry deep inside.
There is nothing better than someone who is keen as all hell to get stuck in, put the work in and make progress. And progress you will if your attitude is right. But, I can't stress enough the importance of learning proper technique. This may mean there isn't as much weight on the bar or you don't train very close to failure. Just know, when you get started, concentrating on technique (and range of motion) will set you up for success in the future. You know what won't? Injuries. Learn, hone, learn some more before you worry about PB's.
Doing the same old!
One of the basic tenants of physical improvement is progressive overload. Simply put, as you become strong and fitter the same workout becomes easier. Makes sense right? To see continual progress we need to employ the principle of progressive overload. The easy way to do this is to put more weight on the bar, but we can also create progressive overload through doing more work in a given session or even training more frequently. Doing the same thing every session is not only boring, but not the ideal way to go about it.
Going it alone!
My job is to help people improve themselves physically, in whatever aspect. I'm not sure how many people I've taken through their first organised workouts; from teaching them to squat, hinge or taking them through an easy circuit. There are knowledgeable people out there that know how to help and are more than willing to lend a hand. If you do need help, don't be too proud to say it, reach out and make the most of your training time rather than spinning your wheels, risking injury, thinking you're in this alone.
Here to help dudes. - AJ