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News | How to get started with strength training

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There are many benefits to adding some strength training to your regular exercise routine. Aside from the obvious weight loss, it gives you a stronger heart and better muscle tone, which means they work better together. It can even slow the ageing process, among other things.

However, many of us are scared of strength training, because they think it will make them bulk up of they simply don’t know where to start. Here are a few things you should know about strength training, and tips on getting started:

First things first
The first thing you should know when it comes to strength training is that strength doesn’t necessarily mean big muscles. How much you’ll bulk up (or not) depends on a number of things, like your genes, age, gender, body type and even the food that you eat.

Posture, posture, posture
One of the most important things in strength training is posture. By keeping the correct posture you reduce the risk of injury, especially to your back. Whether you’re doing planks, squats or heaving lifting, always make sure your back is straight and tummy tucked.

Ease into it
As with most exercise, you need to start small and work your way up. This way you ease your muscles into taking more strain and avoid injury. It also builds a solid base that lays the foundation for your training. If you’ve never done a push-up in your life, start with exercises that uses your bodyweight, then gradually progress to dumbbells, and eventually barbells and heavy lifting, if that’s your thing. It’s entirely up to you how much and how often you want to do strength training, the important thing is that you’re doing it.

Strength food
If you want to build strength, remember to provide your muscles with the proper fuel, by eating a healthy, balanced diet. Strength training in particular require good, lean protein to help build your muscles. Salmon, sardines and tuna are perfect sources of lean protein, and also contain healthy Omega-3 fatty acids that helps you focus better.

Rest
One of the most overlooked parts of exercise is rest. Your body needs time to recover from the extra strain that pushing weights puts on it. Adequate rest also reduces your risk of getting injured. So make sure you take at least one or two rest days a week, more if you’re just starting out.

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