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Help! Am I using The Right Weights?!

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Help! Am I using The Right Weights?!

When it comes to exercise, how do you feel about lifting weights? If you’re completely new to weights, then you might find them a little daunting. But here at OYG we love weights! Which is why we dedicated a whole article to them - Should I Add Weights To My Workout Routine? And the answer is a resounding yes! 

Adding weights to our workouts helps us build muscle and burn fat – and it won’t give us huge, muscly body shapes either (unless we want them too, and in that case, we need to be lifting very heavy weights). 

But once we’ve decided that we want to lift weights, knowing which weights to lift can be tricky. So here’s our guide to getting your weight lifting spot on…

  • If you’re completely new to weights, then it can be a good idea to begin with tins of beans or filled bottles of water so that you can get a feel for them without having to spend money on actual weights. This way, you can also get a feel for the right weight for you. 
  • The aim is to be able to lift the weight in the first place. Then as you repeat your reps, such as during our F.I.T Combat Challenge your weights should challenge you such that you struggle to perform only the last few reps. 
  • When lifting weights, they shouldn’t be so heavy that they mean you can’t perform any reps at all, or that you can’t perform any reps with the same (and correct) form as you would without holding any weight. 
  • Equally, they shouldn’t be so light that they don’t challenge you at all, and you can carry out your full workout without feeling like you’ve been holding any weight. 
  • The type of exercise you do can alter the weight you need too. For example, if you’re performing squats whilst holding weights, your glutes are strong powerful muscles, so you could hold heavier weights. On the other hand, your arm muscles are smaller than the muscles in your legs and bottom, so if you’re performing an exercise where you raise your arms up or above your head, then you’ll probably need lighter weights. 
  • For this reason, if you’re going to buy weights, then consider a multipack of different weights (dumbbells are the most popular kind of free weights to use at home) so that you can change them depending on your type of exercise. 
  • You’ll also become stronger the more you exercise with weights, so you may need to consider buying heavier ones at a later date anyway, you weight lifting legend! 
  • Then, when you become more confident, you could add in different types of weights such as a kettlebell or barbells with adjustable weights at either end. 
  • Most importantly, it’s crucial to listen to your body. If when you’re lifting a weight, something hurts more than you’d expect it to, your body is trying to tell you something. So stop immediately and only if you feel ok, continue with a lighter weight. 

Choosing the right weight might be a case of trial and error, but it’ll be well worth it! 

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