As a beginner training may seem very daunting. When actually training as a beginner is the simplest it will ever be for you during you training life. As a beginner training should be simple as you will gain muscle very easily for your first few months of lifting. These 5 tips should help lead your training in the right direction.
1. Training Split/Routine
Training split for a beginner is very simple, Full Body or Upper Lower. A “Bro Split” or one body part per day training split is not optimum for a beginner. It is important to follow a full body or upper lower split to learn the movements and maximize growth. There are hundreds of full body and upper lower splits on the internet. To be honest you as a beginner you will gain muscle doing anything, so pick a routine and stick to it.
2. Compound Movements
Compound movements are movements which use 2 or more joints to complete the movement. Basically you use lots of muscles and lots of joints. More muscles used more gains right? YES!! COmpound movements should be the main aspect of every workout you complete. The main ones are Squat, Bench Press and Deadlift. The are vital and therefore should be preformed at the beginning of your workout, with proper form and heavy. These movements can be learned through the numerous video tutorials on YouTube.
3. Sets and Reps Scheme
Unfortunately there is no magic set and rep scheme. It is optimal for beginners to complete their Compound Movements using heavy weight and lower reps. For example on squats perform 4 sets of 5 reps using heavy weight (Heavy weight is relative to every persons ability). For isolation work it is recommended to do higher reps with lower weight. For example on leg extensions perform 4 sets of 10-12 reps. Doing this will optimise both muscle gains and strength gains.
4. Proper Form
Using proper form is the most important thing you will do in the gym. Without proper form you are slowing your muscle and strength gains and of course you risk injury. How can you get big if you can’t lift?? This is even more important when it comes to the heavy compound lifts. Watch a few short tutorials on YouTube and practice with lighter weight and you should be fine.
5. Stretching and flexibility
It is not the most obvious aspect of building muscle but keeping healthy joints and muscles is very important. It allows you to complete movements fully using proper form. On lower body days it is vital to warm up your hips and knees and also stretch and foam roll after your workout. For upper body days shoulders and elbows should be warmed up and again foam rolling and stretching after. Foam rolling can be done at any time and is very beneficial at aiding recovery and increasing flexibility.