People lift weight for a variety of reasons. One of these reasons is strength training. According to Wikipedia, “strength training is a type of physical exercise specializing in the use of resistance to induce muscular contraction which builds the strength, anaerobic endurance, and size of skeletal muscles.” What this basically means is lifting weights to stimulate your muscles to the point they grow while becoming stronger. Strength training benefits the heart, strengthens bones, helps improve balance & also helps with weight loss. There are a variety of strength training exercise you can do but, the 4 main ones I focus on are deadlifts, bench press, military press & leg press which require a large space to perform. There are other alternatives that someone can do at home if they don’t have time to go the gym. You can simply do an exercise using your own body but also having the right equipment such a kettlebell or dumbbells or resistance bands will allow you to do more exercise while at home.
Before you start exercising, you should stretch. Some benefits of stretching are
1. Stretching helps to get your heart rate up & warm the muscles which reduces the risk of injury.
2. It improves blood flow to your muscles which will help with a shorter recovery time.
3. Helps maintain better posture during workouts by stopping your muscles from getting tight
Bodyweight Training Strength
After stretching, you are ready to get started. There are various exercises you can do while at home. You just need open space for your exercise to get started. If you don’t have any equipment, no need to worry, you can just use your own body as a weight. Exercises such as press ups, pull ups, jumping jacks & squats can be done with no equipment whatsoever. You just need ample space & your body. The only, downside to this kind of training is that, it’s hard to increase the difficulty to gain more strength but, you can still get really strong; you just have to vary your exercise.
Kettle bells come in various sizes & don’t require a lot of room to store them. There are kettlebell racks for storage if you own a kettle bell set. Deadlift, squats, push presses, swings & snatches are some of the strength training exercises you can do at home. Kettlebells have a smooth handle for firmer grips. The handles need to be smooth because it will be moving in your hand when doing snatches or swings. Start off with a lighter weight, & as you progress in your routine, you will want to make your work outs more difficult by increasing the weight of the kettlebell you are using. Don’t worry if you only have one, changing your movements to make you work out slightly difficult will work just fine.
Dumbbells are great for various strength training exercises such as Lunges, shoulder press & bicep curls. Dumbbells also don’t take up a lot of room. They come in increments of 1 to 2 lb for the smaller weights & 5 lb increments for heavier weights. As a beginner, have no idea what weight would be good to start with. I would suggest visiting your local gym, not to join but to feel the weight & see which one you are comfortable with. Nowadays there are adjustable dumbbells that come with a dial that allows you to adjust the lightness & the heaviness of the dumbbell.
Resistance bands can be good for strength training if you have a small space & you are not a big fan of kettlebells or dumbbells. Resistance bands come single or multiple in a pack come. The ones that come multiple in a pack usually vary in size & resistance level. Some strength training exercise you can do using resistance bands are triceps press, lateral leg raises, rows etc. You can combine resistance bands with bodyweight training to increase intensity level. The light nature of the bands allows you to easily travel with it & keep up with your fitness routine.
I encourage people to try strength training because it benefits the heart, strengthens bones, helps improve balance & also helps with weight loss. Stretching before & after exercise is highly recommended to avoid injury & preventing your muscles from aching after the workout. You can use a kettlebell, dumbbell or resistance band to do a variety of strength training while at home. There are other fitness equipment such as a stability ball & suspension training system that you can use while at home for strength training. Resting is also important while working out, this helps your body to recover while also allowing your body to get used to the exercises you will be doing. Have fun with your strength training exercises.