Are you frustrated with going to gym full of equipment only to find yourself running on the treadmill or climbing on the stair climber?
I used to be too.
Thats when I decided to get educated.
This blog is all you need to equip yourself with enough knowledge to get you off the treadmill.
There are 3 main reasons for gym training;
- To build muscle and reduce body fat
- To lose weight and get more toned
- To get fit or get fitter
Which of these 3 would you mostly like to achieve? Be Specific.
If you chose number 1 then you need to know exactly how to go about doing that and cardio is not the answer. So although you may enjoy running 5km after your workout, it wont help you gain muscle.
If you chose number 2, you’ve got options. Specific weights training will help improve your metabolism and add some muscle to your frame while cardio will help you lose the initial weight.
If you chose number 3 then steer clear of lifting heavy weights, this wont help you get fitter but lighter weights for higher reps will.
Now that we have figured out what you want to achieve lets talk about how you might go about achieving it.
1. Building muscle and reducing body fat.
As mentioned you may like running a 5km after your workout but it wont help you gain muscle, neither will the stairs climber, the rowing machine or any other form of cardio exercise. To gain muscle and reduce body fat you need to lift weights and you need to lift them in a certain style. This style of training is called Muscle Hypertrophy which focuses on new muscle growth. You should train two body parts per session and your session should take you one hour to complete. The two body parts you should train in each session should compliment each other such as chest and triceps, back and biceps or glutes and quads. The reason you train these muscles together is because when you are working your chest muscles like on the bench press, you are also working your triceps when pushing up the barbell. The same goes for your back and biceps, when you are performing any back exercise such as a pull up or a seated row you are also using your bicep muscles throughout. It makes sense to burn out the secondary muscle after the primary muscle as its already being worked so always think of the muscles your are going to use before your gym session. Then you need to think of at least 4 exercises per muscle group because you want to burn out each muscle you are working on in order for them to grow. Your workout should consist of 8 exercises in total, 4 – 5 on the primary muscle and 3 – 4 on the secondary muscle. This way you leave the gym with your muscles depleted which will help them grow and add muscle to your body.
Heres what a chest and tricep workout should look like:
Incline bench press
Flat bench press
Decline bench press
Seated chest fly
Barbell skul crushers
Tricep push down
Tricep kick back
The next most important thing is your sets, reps and rest times . You need to do 3 – 4 sets of 8 – 12 reps on each exercise with 60 – 90 seconds rest in between. Your sets and reps is important because of the load that it puts on your muscles and the figures given are scientifically proven to work best. The other majorly important thing is your rest time. Anything less than 60 – 90 seconds and you are then training your muscles to endure under pressure and your wont actually build any new muscle. And anything over 60 – 90 seconds and you are allowing your body too much recovery which wont keep a constant pressure on your muscles.
2. Losing weight and getting more toned
Lucky for you, you’ve got heaps of options. There are so many ways to start but if it were me I would immediately start some weights training using the same formula above except aim to do 15 reps in each set rather than 8 – 12. With that I would also incorporate some cardio into my workouts to help burn some more calories and shift the initial weight. I would do 45 mins of weights training exercises and maybe 20 – 30 minutes of your choice of cardio at least 4 times per week. Once you see some weight loss and your body fat coming down to a level you are happy with you can simply cut the cardio and focus on building some muscle to your body using the exact above formula. This will help you lose weight but also leave you looking toned as opposed to looking like a skeleton. Nobody likes a skeleton!
3. To get fit or fitter
If your aim is to solely get fit or get fitter then steer well clear of lifting heavy weights and also from doing endless hours of cardio. To get fit you need to increase your lungs capacity. Steady state cardio will not help to do that, neither will heavy weight lifting. What will help is interval training either with or without weight. If you want to become a faster runner you wont improve by repeatedly running 5km but by incorporating sprint intervals you will. If you want to get stronger as an athlete then interval training with some light weights will help your muscles endure less fatigue. Try intervals of hard work periods of 30 – 60 seconds and rest or recovery periods of the same duration. Repeat your intervals for 30 minutes of working hard and recovering, this will get you fit fast.
If you found this helpful please feel free to share it and if think I could help you with your training further please visit;
https://paulkilroyfitness.com/interactive-online-training/ where you can train with me online.