Newcomers to the gym might find the idea of using free weights to train as off-putting for several reasons that are all understandable. The general perception of free weights having an increased risk when compared to machine weights is one such reason. The area of the free weights can also intimidate those less experienced. Overcome the barriers and make use of free weights by following a few tips.
Ask for Assistance
A trainer will make things safer and lend confidence to those tackling free weights for the first time. Trainers offer guidance and show newcomers the ropes without making them feel embarrassed about it. They also ensure that exercises are being performed correctly.
Focus on Movement Patterns
The goal may be building muscle or improving performance in sports, but beginners in both purposes alike need to focus on programming muscle memory. Correct movement patterns will emphasize the parts of the body to be built up while minimizing the risk of injury or strain. The goal is to attain higher efficiency at the movements of free weights exercise, utilizing a full range of controlled motion.
Follow Gym Etiquette
People new to the gym are often afraid of being judged by those who are more experienced with the weights and exercises. The truth is, people are not going to judge based on physique or amount of weight being lifted. Instead, they are going to judge newcomers based on safety, awareness of surroundings, or taking up more space than required. They will also pass judgment on those who commit the cardinal sin: not putting away weights. Follow the common courtesy manners of a gym and find friends among the regulars.
Remember Key Free Weight Facts
Pumping iron comes with some truths everyone should remember. First, the muscles do not get stronger during the workouts, but rather strengthen as they rebuild during rest periods afterward. At least one rest day must exist between workout days for each muscle group. Next, start with weights that you can handle with relative ease. Focus on the number of repetitions that can be performed using the proper technique. Finally, remember that the larger muscle groups are capable of lifting greater weight than smaller groups; not all exercises use the same dumbbell size.
Exercise has many benefits for physical health. For people coping with diabetes, exercise can improve blood sugar levels in addition to overall health and wellness. Physical activity also minimizes heart disease and stroke probability. The key to exercise being beneficial for blood sugar levels is understanding the impact the exercise will have.
Muscles are better able to utilize insulin during and after working out. Being regularly active lowers A1C (hemoglobin) levels. The cells take glucose during muscle contractions as an energy source regardless of insulin being present. While exercising is important, the benefits have a direct correlation to the workout’s length and intensity.
Healthcare professionals recommend adults 2.5 hours of physical activity (swimming, biking, etc.) per week and children with or without diabetes to get up to an hour of exercise per day. For people taking diabetes medications like insulin, speaking with a doctor about the impact of their desired workouts is suggested. This will inform the patient of the potential adverse effects the exercise will have on medications or blood sugar levels.
When taking medications, be sure to make proper adjustments based on the length and intensity of the workout. It is also suggested to monitor blood sugar levels before working out. For instance, if taking insulin or another low blood sugar medication, it is wise to test levels between 15 and 30 minutes before exercising. A safe blood sugar testing range for exercising is 100 to 250 mg/dL. Ketone, or the byproduct of fat broken down into energy, are a sign the body lacks sufficient insulin to control blood sugar levels. Exercising with raised levels of ketones can lead to ketoacidosis and must be treated immediately. Before exercising, make sure ketone levels disappear from urine.
Be sure to check for low blood sugar levels every half an hour of exercise. Stop exercising at the sign of weakness, shakes, or confusion. Check blood sugar levels and if they are too low, take 15 grams of fast-acting carbohydrates and wait 15 minutes before rechecking. If levels are still low, have another 15 grams and recheck blood sugar levels 15 minutes later until levels are stabilized. If unchanged, consult a healthcare provider for assistance.
About Robert J. Winn
Robert J. Winn is a family physician based in Collingswood, NJ. For over fifteen years Dr. Winn has worked to provide care to vulnerable populations that face barriers to healthcare access. As a medical professional, Dr. Winn understands how important fitness is to one’s health. On a personal level, he also understands what it’s like to be overweight, so he is able to empathize with patients who struggle to live healthier lives.
Robert J. Winn’s fitness journey started relatively later in life. Although he helped other people become healthy and stay that way, Dr. Winn had fallen victim to a situation that many busy professionals find themselves in. At age 45 he was overweight and didn’t make time for daily exercise. Toward the end of 2014, Dr. Winn realized that something had to change. He had trouble fitting into the clothes he owned, and activities like walking up a flight of stairs exhausted him. Dr. Winn made the decision to turn his health around by devoting himself to fitness.
One of the most important aspects of being a physician is making sure that patients are taking the necessary steps to remain healthy. However, Dr. Winn was not following his own recommendations. In order to remedy this situation, he joined Unite Fitness, a local fitness studio. The Unite Fitness philosophy of “Heart, Muscle, Mind” resonated with Dr. Winn. With the help of Coach Gavin, the founder of the studio, Dr. Winn was able to shed 50 pounds over the course of six months.
Although Robert J. Winn started his fitness journey by attending a fitness studio and receiving instruction from the staff, he realizes that many people, including the majority of his patients, may not have the resources to purchase a membership or home fitness equipment. It’s important to remember, though, that getting in shape does not have to cost an exorbitant amount of money. In fact, you don’t have to join a gym or purchase anything to get started. Dr. Robert J. Winn recommends that patients begin by walking 30 minutes each day. Also, on the internet, you can find numerous free resources like exercise tips and guides that you can use to workout at home in your living room.
One way that Dr. Winn stayed motivated in the beginning of his fitness journey was by sharing updates on social media. His friends and family saw his progress and encouraged him along the way. Plus, patients were able to witness the transformation take place firsthand. As a result, many patients were inspired to get in shape themselves. Sharing his fitness journey on social media also encouraged Dr. Winn to work harder to lose weight because he didn’t want to let his patients down. He wanted to show them that it was possible for anyone to get in shape and become healthier as long as they are dedicated and work hard.
Being overweight leads to many health issues such as depression, high cholesterol, and diabetes just to name a few. Exercising on a daily basis can prevent or eliminate these types of difficulties. Dr. Robert J. Winn uses his personal fitness journey as an example that patients can relate to. Today he feels stronger, healthier, and happier as a result of his active lifestyle and healthy diet. He continues to encourage his patients to take small fitness steps so that they can live life to the fullest with fewer health issues holding them back.
To help keep others healthy, Robert J Winn just opened Real Wellness, LLC, a private family medicine practice that’s located in Collingswood, New Jersey. Real Wellness is not a typical doctor’s office. Winn’s practice treats the patient, instead of just whatever issue they’re having. At the patient-centered practice, all appointments last for at least 30 minutes in order for Dr. Winn to get to know each patient and their background so he can provide the best possible care. Many practices are too focused on how many paitents they get that they don’t provide quality care. Robert J Winn focuses solely on the quality of care he gives every patient, which is what makes him so successful as a physician.