Common Training Mistakes
Our intention is not to criticize your exercise regimen or suggest that you’re not making progress. We won’t claim that you’re squandering your time at the gym or that your existing workout routine will never lead to any results.
Yet, it’s worth noting that numerous workout mistakes can hinder our progress in achieving our fitness goals. It’s essential to be aware of these errors if you’re aiming to improve your physical fitness this year.
Therefore, we’d like to share some of the most frequent training blunders that people tend to make, which can waste their time and prevent them from achieving their desired outcomes. Pay close attention, as this knowledge can help you avoid such pitfalls.
It’s common knowledge that the gym can be a place to boost one’s ego and self-confidence. Who doesn’t love flaunting their tightest tank top and most impressive pair of sweatpants? However, indulging in ego lifting at the gym may feel good in the moment, but it can be detrimental in the long run.
Ego lifting refers to lifting weights that are too heavy for you, using improper form. It can result in injuries, suboptimal workouts, and potential embarrassment if you fail. Therefore, our advice is to avoid lifting weights that compromise your exercise form and put your muscles, joints, and ligaments at risk.
Instead, opt for moderately heavy weights that allow you to come close to failure without sacrificing proper form. This approach will help you maximize your gains while minimizing your risk of injury.
Not Resting Enough
Ego lifting (lifting too heavy) is a common mistake made by gym-goers, but the second most common mistake is lifting heavy weights without taking enough rest between sets. It’s important to understand that heavy lifting is incredibly taxing on the body, and rest periods are critical for maintaining performance.
Consider this scenario: if you perform 10 reps with a given weight and only rest for a minute, you’re likely to perform fewer reps on the next set if the weight is heavy. However, if you give yourself enough time to rest, you’re more likely to achieve those 10 reps again for at least a couple more sets.
So what does this mean? It means that your muscles are doing more work overall, resulting in better stimulation. For your heaviest lifts, take up to three minutes of rest between sets to allow your body to recover properly.
Progressing Too Quickly
The third mistake that many trainees make is attempting to increase the weight on the bar too rapidly. It’s common to see trainees abruptly increase the weight by 10-15%, which brings us back to the first mistake: ego lifting. Rather than increasing the weight too quickly, it’s crucial to systematize your progression and gradually increase the weight you’re lifting.
Here’s a strategy you can use:
- Begin with a specific weight.
- Aim for 32 or more total reps across four working sets.
- Once you’ve achieved 32 or more reps across four sets, increase the weight by 2.5-5%.
- Work your way up to achieving 32 or more reps across four sets with the new weight.
This approach will enable you to incrementally increase the weight you’re lifting while ensuring that your form remains intact and you don’t put yourself at risk of injury.
Doing Too Many Sets
Finally, it’s essential to note that most people perform too many sets in a single workout, which results in low-quality sets. A quality working set on any heavy exercise should leave you feeling like you need longer rest before your next set, and you’ll quickly notice a decrease in performance.
For beginners, 5 high-quality working sets per muscle group per week, taken close to failure, will suffice. As you advance, the number of sets should increase to 15-20+ to create an effective stimulus and continue progressing.
Therefore, here’s another piece of advice: select a couple of exercises and perform multiple sets, taken close to failure, with three minutes of rest between each set. This approach ensures that you’re completing high-quality sets, which will lead to better results in the long run.
Training mistakes are common but avoidable with some awareness and attention. By being mindful of the common pitfalls, you can focus on maximizing the benefits of your workouts and seeing results more quickly. Consistent effort and proper form are crucial to success in training.
It’s important to remain aware of these training mistakes and take steps to avoid them to achieve your fitness goals more efficiently. By avoiding these errors, you can make steady progress toward your goals. With a bit of patience and attention, you can avoid common training mistakes and achieve the results you desire.