Going to the gym and working hard does not guarantee you a beautiful body. If your approach and technique are bad, it doesn't matter how much sweat you pour or how heavy you lift, you will not see the results you want.
Here are 10 common mistakes you should avoid when working up a sweat!
1. Not having a goal or plan
If you don't have a target in mind, how will you ever know if you've reached it? Working out at the gym without a goal or plan is like wandering in the desert. You'll keep going in circles without getting anywhere. You will jump between exercise routines which is a waste of time and prevents you from mastering any of the exercises. Find a program and stick with it for 8 weeks in order to see results. To find a program that suits your needs, check out SweatFlix℠
. With over 80 hours of on demand workouts, you'll always be able to find something that gives you focus and direction!
2. Doing squats and lunges incorrectly
Squats and lunges are great because they can be done pretty much anywhere. But doing them wrong can lead to knee pain and injury. “The biggest mistake I see people do over and over in the gym is squats and lunges with the weight in their toes and their heels coming up off the ground, As soon as I get them to keep the weight through their heels, almost always the knee pain goes away.” says Caitlin Ritt, a private trainer at Sports Club/LA, U.S.
3. Only doing one set
Muscles do not arrive through taking short cuts. In order to work the muscle properly, you will need to do more than one set. "It is important to do at least two to four sets (of each exercise) to fatigue the muscles to get better overall results," says Lauren Fairbanks, a personal trainer at Equinox fitness club, U.S.
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4. Doing cardio the wrong way
Cardio is a little tough in that the length and quality of your workout is determined by your goals. The 'ideal' duration for medium intensity cardio is 25-45 minutes. If you are going longer than 45 minutes, you may needlessly exhausting yourself.
5. Focusing only on abs
Abs get all the glory and it is easy to see why. But if you only focus on one muscle group, you can create an imbalance in the body. Don't forget to also work the muscles that can't be seen. "You need to provide your body with balance by hitting the muscles like hamstrings, upper back, and inner glute muscles equally," says Tim Rich, a personal training manager at Crunch gym, U.S.
6. Only doing your skillset
Step out of the box. Blow through your comfort zone. It is time to do workouts you avoid so you can work different muscles in different ways. It may be awkward at first but give it time, you'll master it!
7. Relying too much on machines
People often falsely believe that they can get everything they need to be fit from a machine. But you can't forget strength exercises like push-ups, lunges or lifting free weights. "Machines push you through a guided plane of motion, which could cause pain and injury,” says Tim Rich, a personal training manager at Crunch gym.
8. Overdoing it
While you may want to give 110% every time you go to the gym, exhausting yourself is not a good idea. While doing reps, do only what you can do while maintaining proper form. When you can't hold form, it is time to stop. This will protect your central nervous system and helps repair the body post workout.
9. Rushing through exercises
We are all in a hurry these days but it is important to remember that when it comes to exercise, quality is better than quantity. Rushing through will never get you the results you want. If you want to see results, you need to keep intensity high and stay focused on what you are doing. Finish it before moving on to the next thing.
10. Bringing your phone along
We know you may be using your phone for your workout music but the urge to check your email or text messages may be too much for you to ignore. All of this can distract you from putting effort into your routine. Invest in a dedicated music player and leave the phone in the car or your locker.
Are you guilty of any of these gym mistakes? Don't be afraid, fess up!