In today’s show we’re looking at how different training sessions create different outcomes physical outcomes, why knowing why you’re choosing to move is so important and we’ll break down four of the most common movements I’ve seen in training sessions on social media.
When it comes to training, it can be easy to think that lifting weights equals muscles or cardio means you’ll be lean.
The truth is that it’s not that simple. When it comes to training the way you move plays a big part in the overall physical outcome.
If you are looking to gain muscle mass then a program involving either a moderate weight (a moderate weight is around 70% of your max lift) for high reps (100 reps or more) or a
heavy weight (heavy weight is 85% – 95% max lift) for low reps (4-8 reps). Rest between sets should be around 60 seconds.
This is to accumulate lactic acid in the muscles (lactic acid is a bi-product of energy synthesis) and stimulate growth hormones.
If you want to gain muscle strength, train with a moderate weight for low sets and reps (5 reps x 5 sets) with a rest period of 3 minutes. A long rest allows lactic acid to leave the muscles before more is generated.
If you’re looking for muscle endurance, you can train with a light weight (40%-50% max effort) or no weight for max sets and reps over a set time period, resting as needed.
Knowing how to train is important as it is linked to why you want to train. Knowing why you want to achieve a desired outcome is vital in keeping active long term.
- How do I want to feel physically?
- How do I want to feel in my body?
- How do I want to feel emotionally?
- How do I want to be as a person?
- Who can I be as a person?
Finding the answers to these questions in regards to your training will help you to grow not just physically but emotionally as well.
My own journey with getting active has had many ups and downs. Finding what I’m passionate about and enjoy doing with movement has allowed me to keep going for as long as I have.
It’s so important to find what works for you and it doesn’t have to be conventional or mainstream. It doesn’t have to be anything other than enjoyable and fulfilling for you.
There are so many sessions available online at the moment. So many rad trainers are sharing their skills with our community and it’s epic. Seeing all these sessions and finding the ones that work for you is a great way to begin your exploration of why you want to move and how you can do it.
I’ve noticed quite a few movements that keep showing up in many of these sessions so I wanted to give a breakdown of them as a short list of exercises to do may not inspire confidence in doing them if you’re unfamiliar with them.
Squats are a movement that focuses on the Quadriceps aka Quads (the muscles in the top front of our legs). They are made up of four muscles which is why they are called Quads.
How to squat safely:
- Start with knees hip width or more apart with feet in line and toes facing slightly outwards. Bend your knees and push your butt back, at the same time. If this narrow position is difficult for you, slightly widen your stance and try again.
- Bring your hands together in front of your chest, keeping your elbows close to your ribs.
- Squat down by pushing butt back and down, pushing the knees out to track the toes. You want the backs of your legs to sit parallel with the ground.
- As you squat, keep your hands at chest height. You can touch the points of your elbows on the knees if you’re able as you reach the bottom of your squat. Keep your back straight and your torso upright.
- Reverse the motion by pushing with the feet and returning back to standing position.
Inhale on the way down, exhale sharply when returning back up to standing position.
Use a chair to sit back towards as a guide for your hips. If that’s still causing some challenge, you can find an open door way and while facing the door frame, place your hands on the door trim at chest height and as you bend your knees and push your hips back and down, walk your hands down the trim using it as support to help keep you balanced and your chest upright.
- Start on your hands and toes. Your hands and elbows should be directly under the shoulders.
- Squeeze your butt and belly with everything you’ve got! Ground your toes into the floor and flatten your back!
- Lower your body as low as you can. Draw shoulders back, elbows tucked as close to your ribs as possible and bending backwards, not outwards. Keeping your body straight and hard like a plank.
- Keeping solid like a plank and squeezing your butt, exhale and push back up!
If this is too difficult, lower down on the toes and drop to the knees on the way back up. If you can’t do this (don’t worry, push ups are challenging!), instead of having your hands on the floor, place hands on an elevated ledge.
- Lay on the ground on your back with your knees bent and your feet on the ground
- Place your hand either across your chest or flat on the tops of your legs ( this is to stop you swinging your arms to help you sit up or gripping the back of your head and pulling yourself up with your head and neck)
- Squeeze your knees together, tuck your chin down towards your collar bones, exhale and sit up so that your elbows come past your knees Slowly lower yourself back down to start position.
If you can not get your elbows to your knees start by touching the tops of your knees with your hands.
- Stand with feet hip width apart.
- Hinge back with the hips, while at the same time bending your knees. Make sure your shins stay vertical and don’t push forward over your feet.
- Roll the shoulders back so that the arms are firmly pulled into their sockets, and completely flatten out the spine.
- Engage the abdominals and drive the feet into the floor as you press the hips forward. Generate as much power from the hips as possible.
- In the upright position, make sure that you squeeze your butt and your abdominals are still engaged.
Breath in as you hinge back and breath out as you stand up.
Keeping these simple queues in mind when practicing these movements will keep you neck and lower back safe.