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How to Start Strength Training

By Sara Butler

Strength training is an important aspect of your health and it becomes even more important the older that you get. Strength training makes you stronger, yes, but it also helps to keep your heart healthy, boost your metabolism, and keep your bones strong. But walking into the weight room can be a bit intimidating if you've never picked up weights before. Here are some tips to help you get started and leave the intimidation at the door!

The More You Know

The first step to starting up strength training is to learn more about it. Do some research online for the basic principles of strength training such as how it should be done and how it works. Look at different types of strength training options, how to choose your number of reps and sets, and some tips on how to get started. There's no need to memorize the facts, but it may boost your confidence in the weight room if you have a little knowledge to start from and understand where to start.

Choose Your Resistance

Resistance training (strength training) comes in several forms. You can use your own body weight, bands, free weights, dumbbells, gym machines, and more. You're not limited to simply one option, either. Try a variety and see which works best for you, though it may be best to keep it simple in the beginning as you get more comfortable. You should focus early on mastering the proper form of the exercises. Weight machines make a great starting point since they usually come with step-by-step instructions for use and visuals to help you get started.

Make a Plan

A good plan involves exercises that work all your major muscle groups such as the muscles in your upper body (chest, back, triceps, shoulders, and biceps), the core, and the lower body muscles (hamstrings, quads, glutes, and calves). Also make sure to include adequate time for your body to rest between sessions -- a cornerstone to a good plan that will help you to stay healthy, allow for recovery, and let your muscles rebuild.

You can find strength training plans online that can help you tackle the basics. It's important to ensure that it's a plan that matches the fitness level you're starting at. This is why, instead of going the online route, you may want to meet with a certified personal trainer to get you started. They can show you how to do the exercises and how to create a basic plan that fits your needs.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Buford, Ga.

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