Sunday, December 17, 2023

Am I Still a Beginner in the Gym?

Lord willing, I leave for Kentucky this Saturday so I am switching up my lifting schedule for the week.  Instead of my normal Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday schedule I plan on working out Monday-Wednesday-Friday. I'm also going to take this week to evaluate the progress I've made in the past two years. 

Beginning bodybuilders usually progress through several fairly definable stages. You move from movement mastery (focusing on form) to strength overload and then to an increase in overall volume. Gradually your workouts become streamlined for maximum efficiency. Any beginner who follows this plan of progression can expect to see increases in the amount of muscle mass they carry as well how they look and feel. 

Beginner workouts can be performed in any gym. All you need is a simple bench and some barbells and dumbbells for you to start building muscle as a beginner. At the beginning stage of lifting, the focus is on learning the basics while paying very careful attention to the way you are performing your exercises. You must learn to control your body and master the movement patterns and techniques before adding weight in order to prevent overtraining and injuries down the line. Do not move to an exercise your body is not ready for or is prepared to do properly. The goal is to lay out a step by step plan and then take it workout by workout, trying to make constant progress without any slip ups along the way. Add weights only when you can perform the exercise in good form. From here you want to make sure to that you do not approach your training casually. What this means is that instead of simply grabbing a bar or a dumbell, execute the movement with the highest intensity, remembering to rerack all of your own dumbbells and plates. 

Remember: beginning workouts are extremely important since they form the foundation for all the gains to come. Even the most experienced lifters in the gym started somewhere. It is important to be honest with yourself and realize that your gains may not be as fast as you hoped they would be. When you are a beginner you have to accept the fact that results will take time. In the meantime, enjoy the journey and learn from your mistakes and shortcomings. I've had many of them. And be grateful for even the smallest improvements the Lord has allowed you to make! 

Happy lifting this week!