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weight training fitness tips
Fitness
Published Tuesday Aug 20, 2019 by Loren Kennedy

4 Weight Training Tips for Beginners 

Strength Training
Expert Advice
Fitness

You did it! You made the decision to get fit and take on a new workout challenge—weight training. So where do you start? Success with weights (and in the gym) begins with a plan and evaluating your eating habits to best support your routine. 

No matter your exercise experience, here are my four tips for your first time with weights: 

Set a goal.

The first step on any fitness journey should be to set a tangible and attainable goal. The best way to track progress is to have something you are working toward and to measure against. The goal can be an ideal weight or the number of days to make it to the gym or class each week. The Mindbody app helps you keep track of the classes (and services) you’ve participated in, which is an excellent way to track against your goal. As you make strides toward your goal, it should be adjustable so you can continue to push forward!

1
Set a goal.

The first step on any fitness journey should be to set a tangible and attainable goal. The best way to track progress is to have something you are working toward and to measure against. The goal can be an ideal weight or the number of days to make it to the gym or class each week. The Mindbody app helps you keep track of the classes (and services) you’ve participated in, which is an excellent way to track against your goal. As you make strides toward your goal, it should be adjustable so you can continue to push forward!

Work out at home, first.

One of my favorite sayings ever is, “Your fitness journey is a marathon, not a sprint.” This really resonates with me now, especially as I look back to six years ago when I decided to dedicate myself to a healthier lifestyle. A gym atmosphere can be very intimidating at the beginning of anyone’s process. I wasn’t comfortable enough yet with my physical progress to set foot in the gym, but I was ready to make a change. The solution for me was to train at home first. For a half-hour each day, five days a week, I would have an intense timed workout at home. For legs, I would do step-ups on a chair or lunges. For abs, I would do sit-ups and mountain climbers. For chest and arms, I would do push-ups.

I set a date as a goal, that I would go to the gym at the end of that summer. In the interim, I developed a solid foundation at home, that helped me feel more comfortable once it was time to go to the gym. This is a helpful tool I recommend for any beginner to bypass “gymtimidation.” Practice goal-setting and develop consistent positive behavior. In terms of which workouts to do at home, that leads us to our next step! 

2
Work out at home, first.

One of my favorite sayings ever is, “Your fitness journey is a marathon, not a sprint.” This really resonates with me now, especially as I look back to six years ago when I decided to dedicate myself to a healthier lifestyle. A gym atmosphere can be very intimidating at the beginning of anyone’s process. I wasn’t comfortable enough yet with my physical progress to set foot in the gym, but I was ready to make a change. The solution for me was to train at home first. For a half-hour each day, five days a week, I would have an intense timed workout at home. For legs, I would do step-ups on a chair or lunges. For abs, I would do sit-ups and mountain climbers. For chest and arms, I would do push-ups.

I set a date as a goal, that I would go to the gym at the end of that summer. In the interim, I developed a solid foundation at home, that helped me feel more comfortable once it was time to go to the gym. This is a helpful tool I recommend for any beginner to bypass “gymtimidation.” Practice goal-setting and develop consistent positive behavior. In terms of which workouts to do at home, that leads us to our next step! 

Use your resources.

Here on The Ensō, there are tons of helpful articles with tips and tricks. Also, the Mindbody app is an excellent resource to find professional wellness coaches in your area. These coaches can answer questions and provide educated direction based on your fitness goals. Believe it or not, the internet is still an underutilized tool when it comes to using it as a means of education for workout routines, nutrition, and the science behind them. Using reputable resources available to you, such as a professional coach or an instructional video, are excellent ways to ensure you are working out correctly.

3
Use your resources.

Here on The Ensō, there are tons of helpful articles with tips and tricks. Also, the Mindbody app is an excellent resource to find professional wellness coaches in your area. These coaches can answer questions and provide educated direction based on your fitness goals. Believe it or not, the internet is still an underutilized tool when it comes to using it as a means of education for workout routines, nutrition, and the science behind them. Using reputable resources available to you, such as a professional coach or an instructional video, are excellent ways to ensure you are working out correctly.

Go slow.

My last tip is to slow it down. To gain the best results and avoid injury, this is extremely important. At this point, you have a goal, a solid foundation, and have used tools available to you to be prepared. Going slow can be how you attack your goal or just taking your time once you are actively training your muscles. Working at your own pace is largely imperative and, more times than not, going slowing creates more tension in a targeted muscle-building workout. The more time under tension, the higher chance there is for hypertrophy, or muscle growth. 

Explore new classes and trainers on your journey with weight training through the Mindbody app or Mindbody.io

4
Go slow.

My last tip is to slow it down. To gain the best results and avoid injury, this is extremely important. At this point, you have a goal, a solid foundation, and have used tools available to you to be prepared. Going slow can be how you attack your goal or just taking your time once you are actively training your muscles. Working at your own pace is largely imperative and, more times than not, going slowing creates more tension in a targeted muscle-building workout. The more time under tension, the higher chance there is for hypertrophy, or muscle growth. 

Explore new classes and trainers on your journey with weight training through the Mindbody app or Mindbody.io

Loren Kennedy
Written by
Loren Kennedy
Fitness + Lifestyle Blogger
About the author
Loren Kennedy is a professional content creator with a passion for fitness and wellness. Living in the Lower East Side of New York City, he shares an apartment with his roommate Austin and dog, Sherman.
Pregnant Kim Haile and her daughter
The Latest
Published Wednesday Apr 01, 2020 by Kim Haile

Finding Peace: Pregnant in a Pandemic

Perspective
Personal Growth

I’m celebrating week 21 of pregnancy. Baby is the size of a banana or bell pepper. I don’t know why it’s so fun to compare a growing fetus to a fruit or veggie, but it gives me a much-needed laugh while I make note to avoid consuming bananas for the week.  This is also ultrasound week. I’m no longer able to bring my husband and daughter to the appointment, but we understand that these restrictions are put in place to protect us. Like so many pregnant women and mothers across the world, I’m doing my best to adapt to the new norm and changes that COVID-19 has introduced to my already stressful life. 
 
Pregnant women across various metro cities are beginning to face fears of delivering their baby without a birthing partner by their side for the duration of the hospital stay. Family members and friends may not be able to meet baby in-person for quite some time, so those special first meetings happen over FaceTime. New mommy groups switch to virtual meetups. I’m feeling the weight of it all (and I’m not referring to the extra weight I’ve gained from WFH snacking), the heaviness of the unknown that we all carry as we navigate through all of this change. 

Tuning into nightly news or googling the latest COVID-19 death tolls is a surefire way to lose sleep, but we do it anyway because we want to stay informed as we wrap our heads around how much this pandemic will change our world. Maybe your anxiety and personal despair grow as you hear from a friend who recently lost their job or read about your favorite restaurant unable to keep its doors open. Canceled events, long-anticipated vacations, and temporarily closed fitness studios are not only inconvenient, but force us to reframe our attitudes. 

I can hear my mother’s voice telling me to relax. She tells me that the baby can feel my stress, and that isn’t good for anyone. I begin to feel guilty about my inability to quiet the negative feelings and decide that something needs to change. We can’t change what the media reports, the pressure at work, or predict how long it will take for the economy to recover. But what if we reminded ourselves to do the best with what we have and keep moving forward—one day at a time. Amidst the chaos, we’re becoming a stronger, kinder community, and that is truly a beautiful thing to see. 

The journey to my second trimester wasn’t an easy one. I suffered a heartbreaking miscarriage a few years ago. I made time for my body and mind to heal after the loss. Float tank sessions, meditation, vinyasa power flow, and frequent facials helped me connect with my body. I can’t say self-care alone healed my depression, but it certainly helped me discover the importance of self-love and repaired my self-confidence. 

After many pregnancy tests and negative results, I was at peace with accepting that having another child may not be in the cards for me. Fast forward to age 37. I was shocked to see a + symbol on three pregnancy stick tests. Although I’m medically referred to as a geriatric pregnancy, my OB/Gyn said there was no reason for me to go into this pregnancy with a negative mindset. Eat healthy, stay active, and focus on being POSITIVE. Maybe the pursuit of happiness and path to personal wellness was really that simple.  

On my 38th birthday, I celebrated my 20th week of pregnancy—I’ll refer to it as the “Pregnant in a Pandemic Party.” I blew out a candle on a warm chocolate chip cookie that my husband and daughter baked together. They were my only party guests, but I didn’t need a room full of people at a fancy restaurant to feel pure gratitude. People across the world continue to test positive for COVID-19. I was safe in my home with my family. I was right where I needed to be.

Although the past few weeks have brought a wide range of emotions for all of us, I’m choosing to use this extra time to self-reflect and bond with family. I’m mentally recording my five-year-old daughter as she whispers to my stomach and tells her baby sister that August couldn’t come soon enough. This is life. So perfectly imperfect at times, but beautiful in more ways than we know. We may be housebound, down to the last few rolls of toilet paper, and our hair hasn’t seen a salon in over a month. The loss of control and routine over our daily lives can make us feel like failures. Trust me; we’re not. We were never meant to get through this alone. Together, we will get through this—one day at a time. 

Kim Haile Headshot
Written by
Kim Haile
Senior Corporate Communications Specialist
About the author
Hailing from the East Coast, Kim loves the challenge of Marketing and the fast-paced tech industry. She earned her undergraduate degree in Business from Northeastern University in Boston, where she endured brutal New England winters and avoided smiling while riding the T. Now a happy Californian, Kim loves the beach, HIIT workouts, and traveling with her husband and young daughter.