By: Siddiqu “The Personal Trainer”
ACE (American Council of Exercise), NFPT (National Federation of Personal Training) Certified Personal Trainer, IHSA Certified Coach, and Boxing Fitness Trainer
As you begin to set your diet and fitness goals for the new year, it’s important to map out your goals, schedule your gym time, and find a workout partner who encourages and motivates you. It’s easy to give up when things get a little tough with your schedule, so here are a few key mistakes to be aware of so that you can maintain your focus!
1. Not stretching. If you want to get leaner, faster or have a better looking body, stretching assist with all of those things. A tight muscle is not just begging for an injury – it will always be underdeveloped. In a test of the 1976 Olympic team for flexibility, gymnasts were ranked #1 and power lifters were ranked number #2 – stretching also makes you stronger.
2. Not setting realistic goals. Unrealistic and vaguely stated goals are among the leading causes of exercise dropout. The key is to establish a training goal that is specific and appropriate for your fitness and skill levels—something a bit challenging but not overly difficult.
3. Bad form. I hate when I walk in a gym and see these guys who feel they are the strongest people on earth because they grab heavy dumbbells, yet do an exercise with terrible form! They are not really even performing the exercise at all, and they will eventually hurt themselves. Extend your arms or legs fully and retract them fully, none of that “half” stuff!
4. The all-or-nothing approach. Not having a full hour to exercise is no reason to skip your workout. Research shows that even 10 minutes of exercise can provide important health benefits.
5. Not doing cardio, or not doing strength training. Regardless of your goals, you should have a balance of both. Even if you’re looking to lose weight, you should strength train (muscle incinerates calories), and even if you’re looking to build muscle, you should exercise your heart with cardio.
6. Exercising too hard. If you’ve skipped several workouts, don’t try to make up for lost time in one session. You’re only setting yourself up for soreness and possible injury.
7. Doing the same thing. The best exercise for you to do is a different exercise then you have done. Variety is not only the spice of life, but the key to real results. You can find new workouts on the internet, in magazines or with your personal trainer. Just please do something different.
Additionally, the gym is not the place to launch your political campaign or work on your stand up comedy routine. If you go to the gym and try to talk to everyone about everything, then you will never get any real results. A 10-minute conversation may not seem like a long time, but when you are limited on how much time you can spend in the gym, it will throw your workout completely off.
Have fun, and stay focused!
For more information on Siddiqu “The Personal Trainer” go to CF4Life.com
Siddiqu is a regular guest on Chicago’s Power 92.3′s morning show, the WVON Morning show, and Fox’s Raw TV. Siddiqu specializes in weight loss and body toning. His educational background includes a B.A. in Marketing from DePaul University, and he is currently pursuing an MBA/MS from Loyola University Chicago.