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Weight Training for Beginners- Get Lean & Strong

Are you a newbie when it comes to weight training and want a convenient, total body workout routine that you can do from home? Are you intimidated by gyms where it seems like everyone else knows what they’re doing? Do you want a more healthy lifestyle, but still need working out to be as convenient as possible? Then you’ve come to the right place. 

York Barbell has experience with all levels of fitness- advanced to elementary. Don’t worry about where you’re at in your journey, because everyone starts somewhere. We will show you what weight equipment we recommend for beginners, provide workout options that coincide with our equipment, and other weight training tips that will be useful for someone just starting out.

 

Here’s what you should start with:

 

  1. Weighted Jump Ropeweighted jump rope

Benefit: Jumping rope is a great form of cardio without even having to go anywhere. A weighted jump rope will increase the strength in your arms, legs, and abs as well as increase your balance and hand-eye coordination. Jumping rope on a consistent basis will undoubtedly tone your body and you can watch any excess weight ‘jump’ off in front of your own eyes!

Tips: Make sure you’re using the proper form. Jumping rope is not a high-impact activity so you should only jump high enough to clear the rope, keep your legs bent throughout the exercise to allow for a safe, soft landing, and point your toes down slightly when you do jump. Always make sure you’re jumping rope on an even surface, as well. A lot of people workout to music, but this could come in handy specifically for jumping rope so you can feel motivated to jump to the beat of the music.

According to Prevention, a content hub for trustworthy health information, they recommend to do your jump rope workout 3 or 4 days a week, while beginners should aim for a 5-15 minute session and experienced jumpers should shoot for 20-40 minutes. Remember that just starting out you’ll probably need to catch your breath after a minute or two. Make sure to time your breaks as well as the time you’re jumping for so you can set goals for improvement. To keep things engaging, remember that you can alternate between jumping exercises and/or you can do another activity like crunches or air squats in between intervals.

Exercises

  • Single Foot Hops- Hopping with one foot at a time, alternating feet.
  • Kick- Outs- Kick out your leg straight, with each jump, alternating feet. 
  • Jacks- Alternate the landing of each jump with a wide and close stance, as you would doing the leg portion of a jumping jack 
  • High-Knees- Similar to single foot hops except you’re driving your knees higher up in the air. 
  • Back & Forth- Alternate your legs North- South rather than East West; Similar to the jacks, alternate your feet while jumping so one is forward and the other is back. 

 

  1. Ankle Weights

Benefit: Ankle weights allow you to move freely in multiple directions, while giving you some extra weight that can improve the intensity of static exercises as well as something as simple as walking. For example, Selena Gomez, walks around Disney in them. According to Terry Downey, a physical therapist affiliated with Harvard Health, “The weight places a greater load on the muscle group being targeted. The muscles have to work harder to move this increased load against gravity, and in turn this will increase strength,” explains Downey.

Tips: For walking, keep the ankle weights between 3-5 pounds to avoid altering your stride. For exercises, you can use up to 10 pounds of weight on each leg. Starting weight will vary person to person, so make sure you’re not pushing yourself too hard. “The perfect weight load for any exercise is one where the last two reps of every set are really hard to complete,” says Holly Perkins, author of Lift to Get Lean.

Exercises

  • Donkey Kicks
  • Leg Raises (from all directions)
  • Squat Jumps
  • Lunges
  • Bicycle Kick (laying down touching knee to elbow, alternating)
  • Bird Dog (On knees, one arm out while other leg lifts straight up, keep alternating)

 

3. Dumbbell Set

Benefit: There are many benefits to dumbbell training. According to Muscle and Fitness, serious strength and mass goals can be achieved by training with dumbbells. Women should not worry about looking ‘bulky’ from weight training. “Women typically don’t develop big muscles from strength training, because compared to men, women have 10 to 30 times less of the hormones that cause muscle hypertrophy,” ensures fitness magazine, VeryWellFit. Weight training on a consistent basis (at least 3 times a week) will begin to build lean muscle and increase your resting metabolism, allowing you to lose more calories throughout the day. Dumbbells are also great for stabilization and working on any strength imbalances. A variety of workouts can be achieved with dumbbells. They’re also easy to store and use anywhere- on the go, at home, outside, etc. 

Tips: Start small and work your way up! Pick a weight that is easy at first, but hard when it gets toward the end of your set. Remember to always be steady and controlled while working with dumbbells. Even when doing arm exercises, your whole body should still be in an athletic stance- knees slightly bent, back straight, and typically try to look forward to help with overall posture and alignment. With every exercise, you want to have the same speed and control when you’re performing the movement on the way ‘up’ and the way ‘down.’

Exercises: 

Arms-

  • Bicep Curls
  • Incline Flys
  • Shoulder Press
  • Side Lateral Raise
  • Front Raise

Legs-

  • Front Squat
  • Lunges
  • Straight Leg Deadlift
  • Hip Thrusts

Need visuals for these exercises? Click Here 

Once your strength & fitness journey progresses and you become more advanced, you will want to upgrade to our Premium Dumbbell Set so you’re never without the weight you may be capable of lifting.

weight lifting for beginners

We hope you now feel more confident and equipped to start your weight training process. This equipment is safe, easy to use, and if done with proper form, sweat, and consistency you’ll be on your way to getting leaner and stronger! Check out our blog for more information about York Barbell, weightlifting, and more.