Common gym mistakes

20 April 2017 by
First published: 14 January 2017

New to the gym? Here are some common gym mistakes to avoid.

The New Year is here, which means that hordes of people are now rushing to the gym in an effort to stick to their New Year’s resolution of finally achieving their fitness goals. However, if you’re a newbie to the gym, chances are you could be doing a few things slightly wrong. Don’t get caught out! Here are the common gym mistakes that you need to avoid.

Not planning your routine

When you go to the gym without planning your routine in advance, you’ll likely waste way too much time dawdling and trying to decide what exercise to do next. If you’re unsure, ask a friend or a trainer to help you out, or do some research online for a beginner’s guide to training.

Forgetting gym essentials

Before you head to the gym, it’s important to make sure that you’ve packed all of your essentials in your kit bag. You don’t want to keep rushing to the water fountain because you’ve left your bottle at home, or have to keep your bag with you at all times because you misplaced your padlock for the locker. It pays to be prepared.

Skipping the warm-up

Jumping straight into a workout can do you more harm than good. Your muscles have to be warmed up properly before you start exercising, otherwise you could risk tearing them and causing yourself a very painful injury. Before you begin, go for a gentle jog on the treadmill to loosen up your body.

Practising exercises the wrong way

It can feel intimidating working out in the gym when you’re surrounded by people who are seemingly far more experienced than you. However, so many people practise exercises at the gym in the wrong way without even realising it. If you’re not sure how to do a certain exercise or how to use a piece of equipment, ask a trainer at the gym to show you how to do it correctly.

Pushing yourself too much

When you’re exercising, you should definitely push yourself so that you can reach your full potential. However, it’s crucial that you don’t go overboard. If you push yourself too much, you could risk injury or being burnt out for the rest of the week. Consistency is key, so figure out your limits and gradually build on your skills and confidence every time you go to the gym.

Ignoring the cool down

Cooling down after a gruelling workout is a very important aspect of your gym routine and one that way too many people completely ignore. If you don’t stretch afterwards, you’ll definitely feel the consequences the next day. You’ll feel stiff, achey and chances are you’ll want to take a few days off from exercise to recover. Don’t do it.

Not tracking your progress

How are you supposed to appreciate how far you’ve come if you don’t track the progress that you’ve made at the gym? On days when you feel like you haven’t achieved as much as you would have liked over a certain period of time, looking back at where you were when you first began could give you the boost you need to keep striving to achieve your fitness goals.

Lacking commitment

It’s all well and good saying that you want to become a fitter, healthier and happier new you. However, now’s the time to prove that you have the willpower and determination to actually make it happen this year. Going to the gym shouldn’t be an occasional hobby – it should be a steadfast commitment. This is the year that you’re actually going to keep your New Year’s resolution, right? We believe in you.