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How Bodyweight Training Will Help You Reach Your Goals

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How Bodyweight Training Will Help You Reach Your Goals

If your goals include building more muscle strength, flexibility and tone, then bodyweight training could help you reach your goals this year, with bells on! 

But what is bodyweight training?

Great question! Bodyweight training is performing exercise using your bodyweight. If you think this sounds complicated, you’re right, it does sound complicated. But actually, the reality is, you’ve probably already carried out numerous bodyweight training exercises… 

Bodyweight training is a type of strength training and involves no hand held weights or equipment – just literally your own bodyweight. Common examples of bodyweight training exercises include push ups, squats and lunges. So you see? You’ve almost certainly done some before! 

Most of the workouts in our OYG Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced plans include bodyweight exercises, especially in the warm ups, before introducing any dumbbells or weights. 

In fact, working out against our own bodyweight is probably the oldest kind of exercise around, before free weights and gym machines were even invented! 

They help us to build muscle strength and size – we only need to think about how much our thighs burn during a heavy session of lunges to realise that. The pain the next day, or delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) to give it it’s official name, is actually caused by tiny tears that we create in our muscles as we train them. 

These tears then get repaired by the body when we’re at rest (which is why rest days are so important). The body does this by using the protein from our diet to create new muscle fibres, and layers these new fibres over the top of the tears. This all happens on a microscopic level, but over time if we continue our training, we’ll notice an increase in muscle size, strength and tone. 

Don’t get us wrong, we still stand by our advice that adding weights to your routine is extremely beneficial. But there’s also a place for training our muscles using our own bodyweight too. The ideal exercise plan is one that includes a good mix of high energy aerobic movements along with bodyweight exercises and working out with weights. 

What’s more, some bodyweight exercises actually combine strength training with cardio, such as during high knees or everyone’s ‘favourite’, burpees. All bodyweight exercises are challenging, and become progressively more so. Just try doing three sets of 12 squats, and you’ll know what we mean. But this is a good thing, as any exercise that challenges us is doing us the world of good. 

 

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