So you’ve been diligently hitting the gym for weeks now but yet, your “guns” are nowhere near the canons they’re supposed to be, or your six-pack is still buried under too much insulation. Furthermore, we all know how precious time is. When we put in the hours, we expect to see some results. If you’re unsatisfied with the results you’re achieving at the moment, you may be making a few of the mistakes listed below.
1) Not Working Hard Enough
This may be a hard pill to swallow, but it’s the truth. If you’ve been doing the same exercises at the same intensity for eons, your body is bound to adapt to it. To make matters worse, your body actually becomes more efficient at it, using less effort and burning fewer calories.
Overcome it: It’s not rocket science. If you want to see results, switch up your routine. For example, keep varying the exercises you do each time you hit the gym. For those concerned about working on specific muscles, there are countless variations of exercises you can do that target a particular group of muscles. Remember if you’re working within your comfort zone, you’re not working at all.
2) Exercising Too Hard/Too Often
Yes, the reverse is true too. It’s three weeks into the New Year and you’ve been working hard to get in shape. Maybe a little too hard. If you continuously put your body through rigorous strength and cardio routines without any breaks between, you may stop making progress.
Overcome it: Make sure you get plenty of rest between workouts. I’m sure most of us already know by now that muscle growth occurs when our body repairs or replaces damaged muscle fibres after a workout (this occurs while we rest). So naturally, if you want to see growth, allow your body some time to recuperate.
3) Skipping Leg Day
It turns out not training your legs enough doesn’t only result in stick-like lower limbs. A study done in Norway has uncovered that performing leg exercises results in an elevated level of testosterone and growth hormone in the body. In turn, these hormones will help you achieve superior results i.e. bigger biceps.
Overcome it: Don’t skip leg training. Better yet, do some squats/deadlifts/ lunges before you begin any workout to acutely increase your systemic anabolic hormone concentration. It will assist with your overall muscle growth. Besides, nobody wants twig-like legs.
4) Lifting Wrong Weights
There’s two ways you may be doing this: lifting too light or lifting too heavy. Obviously, lifting weights that are too light is going to get you nowhere because your muscles are not under any strain. On the other hand, lifting weights that are too heavy can compromise your form. When this happens you may end up using different muscles to lift the weights than the ones intended.
Overcome it: The golden rule to remember here is to pick weights that are heavy enough so you struggle through your final reps, but not too heavy that your form is compromised. Whenever you perform an exercise, be mindful of the muscle group you should be using. Should you feel aches in a different muscle group, try working on your form with a lighter weight instead.