Basic Gym Workout
You have made a very healthy lifestyle decision by joining the gym, but you are confused by all the equipment, have no idea how or in what order to use it and dont have the extra money for a Personal Trainer. This is a very common situation, and gym staff do not always go out of their way to help. Follow this simple guide to getting an effective fat burning workout from our own Dietitian/Personal Trainer Amy Hatton.
What are sets and reps?
A rep, or repetition, is one single action of a particular exercise. For example, one push-up. A set is a group of repetitions. For example, one set of 10 push-ups. Sets and reps are used to determine the number of times you will complete a particular exercise. For example, 3 sets of 10 push-ups.
What exercises should I do for weight loss?
Weight lifting exercises are very beneficial to weight loss. Many people, particularly women, avoid lifting any weights in fear of gaining muscle. This will not happen! Yes, you will gain muscle mass, but if you complete the exercise as described below in this article, you will not build bulging muscles. In fact, having extra muscle mass will burn more fat whilst exercising and during daily activities.
Basic Gym Exercise Information
To get the maximum benefit out of an hour at the gym, we should aim to do both weight training and cardio training. Weight training should focus on using predominantly large muscle groups, as these burn more kilojoules as they work. These muscle groups include the quadriceps, hamstrings, chest and back muscles. Weight training should come before cardio training to optimise fat burning.
Complete 3 sets of 15 reps on each of the four main muscle groups. Use a weight that is heavy enough so you feel exerted, but not too heavy that you can not complete the 3 sets of 15 reps. As you become stronger, you can choose to lift heavier to ensure you continue to increase your fitness. Try not to rest in between each set. Instead, you could do a set of abdominal crunches, leg extensions or step ups. This will keep your heart rate up during the entire weight lifting component.
Follow this with 30 minutes of cardio training. Alternate the equipment you use. You may like to do 15 minutes on the treadmill, then 15 minutes on the cross trainer. If you prefer to do an entire 30 minutes on one machine, use a different machine on your next workout. Thirty minutes may seem difficult to start with, so gradually build up to this if need be. Once you reach your goal, increase the intensity by increasing the speed, incline or resistance. Remember, the higher the intensity, the greater kilojoules burnt.
Many gyms will offer an introductory consultation with a Personal Trainer. It will be a one off payment and the trainer will design a program for you and take you through each exercise. This will teach you to learn how to do each exercise most effectively and prevent any injury. You may like to do this once every few months to prevent you getting bored of your routine.
Health and Safety
Always take a drink bottle and towel to the gym. It is very important to stay hydrated whilst working out, especially in the summer months. A towel is also extremely important to place on the machines prior to using them, and wiping them down afterwards.
Some weight lifting exercise options:
Fit ball Squat
Kneeling leg extension
Barbell chest press
Dumbbell chest press
One arm row
Lat Pull down
Added to site on : Monday, 1 February 2010