When looking to get in shape, no matter what your goals may be, it’s always important that you train smart and sensibly. Unfortunately for some, this seems to be a concept they can’t quite get their heads around. Whilst life is too short to be super-serious all of the time, in the gym, for the most part at least, you must make sure you’re taking things seriously. This doesn’t mean that you should walk into the gym like a robot, ignore everybody, smash through your workout and leave without saying a word, but it does mean that you should make sure you’re training smart and acting responsibly. Not taking your training responsibly will not only mean that you progress at a much slower rate, it also means that you will be putting others at risk, and you may even hurt yourself in the process. No matter your age, gender, or experience with training, it never hurts to learn something new, so let’s look at seven training mistakes to avoid making for 2017.
Don’t be the ‘advice’ guy all the time
This is tricky because sometimes people out there offer help and advice for all of the right reasons, whilst others do it to try to be superior. If you’re in the gym and you notice somebody performing exercises in a certain way, providing they aren’t putting themselves at risk, you may wish to think twice about telling them what they should be doing instead. Really, it all comes down to your intentions. If you generally want to help somebody, then by all means offer them friendly advice, but if you simply want to feel superior, and try to show them up, keep your advice to yourself. What’s more, don’t be offended if people ignore what you have to say. You also need to remember that you aren’t right about everything, and if people are following a certain routine, or lifting in a certain way, there could be a valid reason for this, so don’t question it.
Don’t skip legs
Skipping leg day is now a really big thing in the fitness community, and if you want to escape the wrath of the online fitness communities, you must ensure that you train your legs like you would any other body part. Training legs is very difficult, it is painful, and some people, especially those who don’t wear shorts, don’t see the point. If you build your upper body up however, and have a lower body with legs like sticks, you will look ridiculous. Put simply, if you train other muscle groups, you must train your legs too.
Don’t try training until you puke
You will see some people out there who yell things like: ‘Go hard or go home’ or ‘no pain, no gain’ etc, but truthfully, this isn’t the case. They will literally push themselves until they puke, and boy will they relish letting everybody who will listen, know that they puked whilst training. This doesn’t make them “hardcore” or a “beast” it simply makes them irresponsible. Training with that much intensity is dangerous and counterproductive because if you are throwing up instead of training, you aren’t making gains, plus you’re losing vital protein. Training hard is one thing, but training until you literally make yourself sick, well, that’s a recipe for disaster.
Don’t neglect your abs
When cutting for the summer, you will probably be training your abs two or three times per week, but when bulking, well, you may not bother. Your abs and your core however, should be trained for reasons other than just aesthetics, as a strong core is essential for functional training. Even if you aren’t trying to diet down to look good, you should make sure your abs are being trained regularly.
Don’t work through injuries
This is one of the most common mistakes that people can possibly make when training, yet people do it every single day. When training, whether lifting, stretching, running, or anything else, if you pick up an injury, you must stop immediately. You will instantly know when you’re injured, and if you try to carry on, you will make things worse. The pain at the time won’t be that bad as you’ll have endorphins and adrenalin flowing through your body, but you will still feel uncomfortable. If this happens, stop what you’re doing, and head home. If you’re injured, you must take time to rest and recover, and if that means taking several days, even weeks, off away from the gym, then so be it. People will often try to work through injuries because they’re worried they’ll undo all of their hard work by not training. In reality, training whilst injured will put more strain on the injury, you’ll prevent it from healing properly, and you will probably make it worse as well. When injured, take time off, and allow your body to heal.
Don’t play things by ear
By this, we mean don’t walk into the gym without having a plan or routine in place. It’s no good doing what you feel like doing on the day, because this means you’ll do everything you want to do, and will ignore the things you aren’t fond of. For example, if people had a choice, most would much rather train chest than train legs. When you train, you must make sure you have a plan/routine in place, and that you stick to it religiously. If you’re supposed to train a certain body part on a certain day, make sure you do. Perform the exercises, the reps, and the sets required, and make sure you stay on plan. This will help you to stay disciplined, plus it means you’re in control and that you know exactly what you’re doing for the week ahead.
Don’t leave a mess
Gym etiquette is very important, yet not all people have it. When you finish with certain weights, don’t leave them out, put them back on the rack where they’re supposed to be. If you sweat on a bench, grab a towel or tissue paper, and give it a quick wipe down. Basically, always clean up after yourself and don’t leave a mess for other gym members and the gym owners themselves.