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weight training fitness tips
Fitness
Published Tuesday Aug 20, 2019 by Loren Kennedy

4 Weight Training Tips for Beginners 

Strength Training
Expert Advice
Fitness

You did it! You made the decision to get fit and take on a new workout challenge—weight training. So where do you start? Success with weights (and in the gym) begins with a plan and evaluating your eating habits to best support your routine. 

No matter your exercise experience, here are my four tips for your first time with weights: 

Set a goal.

The first step on any fitness journey should be to set a tangible and attainable goal. The best way to track progress is to have something you are working toward and to measure against. The goal can be an ideal weight or the number of days to make it to the gym or class each week. The Mindbody app helps you keep track of the classes (and services) you’ve participated in, which is an excellent way to track against your goal. As you make strides toward your goal, it should be adjustable so you can continue to push forward!

1
Set a goal.

The first step on any fitness journey should be to set a tangible and attainable goal. The best way to track progress is to have something you are working toward and to measure against. The goal can be an ideal weight or the number of days to make it to the gym or class each week. The Mindbody app helps you keep track of the classes (and services) you’ve participated in, which is an excellent way to track against your goal. As you make strides toward your goal, it should be adjustable so you can continue to push forward!

Work out at home, first.

One of my favorite sayings ever is, “Your fitness journey is a marathon, not a sprint.” This really resonates with me now, especially as I look back to six years ago when I decided to dedicate myself to a healthier lifestyle. A gym atmosphere can be very intimidating at the beginning of anyone’s process. I wasn’t comfortable enough yet with my physical progress to set foot in the gym, but I was ready to make a change. The solution for me was to train at home first. For a half-hour each day, five days a week, I would have an intense timed workout at home. For legs, I would do step-ups on a chair or lunges. For abs, I would do sit-ups and mountain climbers. For chest and arms, I would do push-ups.

I set a date as a goal, that I would go to the gym at the end of that summer. In the interim, I developed a solid foundation at home, that helped me feel more comfortable once it was time to go to the gym. This is a helpful tool I recommend for any beginner to bypass “gymtimidation.” Practice goal-setting and develop consistent positive behavior. In terms of which workouts to do at home, that leads us to our next step! 

2
Work out at home, first.

One of my favorite sayings ever is, “Your fitness journey is a marathon, not a sprint.” This really resonates with me now, especially as I look back to six years ago when I decided to dedicate myself to a healthier lifestyle. A gym atmosphere can be very intimidating at the beginning of anyone’s process. I wasn’t comfortable enough yet with my physical progress to set foot in the gym, but I was ready to make a change. The solution for me was to train at home first. For a half-hour each day, five days a week, I would have an intense timed workout at home. For legs, I would do step-ups on a chair or lunges. For abs, I would do sit-ups and mountain climbers. For chest and arms, I would do push-ups.

I set a date as a goal, that I would go to the gym at the end of that summer. In the interim, I developed a solid foundation at home, that helped me feel more comfortable once it was time to go to the gym. This is a helpful tool I recommend for any beginner to bypass “gymtimidation.” Practice goal-setting and develop consistent positive behavior. In terms of which workouts to do at home, that leads us to our next step! 

Use your resources.

Here on The Ensō, there are tons of helpful articles with tips and tricks. Also, the Mindbody app is an excellent resource to find professional wellness coaches in your area. These coaches can answer questions and provide educated direction based on your fitness goals. Believe it or not, the internet is still an underutilized tool when it comes to using it as a means of education for workout routines, nutrition, and the science behind them. Using reputable resources available to you, such as a professional coach or an instructional video, are excellent ways to ensure you are working out correctly.

3
Use your resources.

Here on The Ensō, there are tons of helpful articles with tips and tricks. Also, the Mindbody app is an excellent resource to find professional wellness coaches in your area. These coaches can answer questions and provide educated direction based on your fitness goals. Believe it or not, the internet is still an underutilized tool when it comes to using it as a means of education for workout routines, nutrition, and the science behind them. Using reputable resources available to you, such as a professional coach or an instructional video, are excellent ways to ensure you are working out correctly.

Go slow.

My last tip is to slow it down. To gain the best results and avoid injury, this is extremely important. At this point, you have a goal, a solid foundation, and have used tools available to you to be prepared. Going slow can be how you attack your goal or just taking your time once you are actively training your muscles. Working at your own pace is largely imperative and, more times than not, going slowing creates more tension in a targeted muscle-building workout. The more time under tension, the higher chance there is for hypertrophy, or muscle growth. 

Explore new classes and trainers on your journey with weight training through the Mindbody app or Mindbody.io

4
Go slow.

My last tip is to slow it down. To gain the best results and avoid injury, this is extremely important. At this point, you have a goal, a solid foundation, and have used tools available to you to be prepared. Going slow can be how you attack your goal or just taking your time once you are actively training your muscles. Working at your own pace is largely imperative and, more times than not, going slowing creates more tension in a targeted muscle-building workout. The more time under tension, the higher chance there is for hypertrophy, or muscle growth. 

Explore new classes and trainers on your journey with weight training through the Mindbody app or Mindbody.io

Loren Kennedy
Written by
Loren Kennedy
Fitness + Lifestyle Blogger
About the author
Loren Kennedy is a professional content creator with a passion for fitness and wellness. Living in the Lower East Side of New York City, he shares an apartment with his roommate Austin and dog, Sherman.
people in upward dog practicing yoga on mats
Fitness
Published Wednesday Jul 28, 2021 by Bree Lewis

Sweat Redemption: 5 Tips for Getting Back Into Your Hot Yoga Practice

Yoga
Fitness
Expert Advice

If you’ve ever taken a hot yoga class, you know it’s always going to be one thing—outrageously hot. Not the “let’s hang by the pool and get that sun-kissed glow” kind of hot either. I’m talking that “I can't believe I have this much sweat in my body” and “I may or may not pass out” kind of hot. It’s nothing to mess around with, and after a year or so of not being able to go, it’s easy to forget just how serious that heat can be.

To get the maximum enjoyment and benefits out of your heated yoga classes, you need to prepare yourself before and take care of yourself afterward. Luckily, I’ve been taking some classes (sweating enough for the both of us) and I’ve listed my five favorite must-dos to help you readjust to your heated classes and get back to the hot yoga summer that we all want.

1. Go at your own pace

Heated classes are difficult in nature. The normal difficulty of regular poses is mixed in with the added challenges of sweating and dealing with the humidity and the heat (at times, I’ve seen the thermostat climb to 108 degrees—yikes!). Depending on what type of yoga class you’re taking (sculpt, Bikram, power vinyasa), the difficulty level and temperature are going to vary. It’s also important to remember that each person in the room is going to practice in a way that’s unique to them. Hours slept, hydration levels, food intake, and different lifestyles are all contributing factors that make our practices different. What you practice on your mat is your own––trust your body and only do what feels right to you.  And remember, it’s okay to take breaks!

2. Hydrate like your life depends on it (honestly, it might)

The rise in temperature mixed in with the humidity that we all know and love creates the perfect recipe for sweating—like A LOT. You go into a heated class dry and come out feeling like you just took a dip in the pool. Before heated classes, I had no idea it was physically possible to sweat that much. If you’re going to a heated class, especially after a long break, it’s easy to forget just how much you might sweat. Is it possible to lose that much water if you haven’t consumed it first? Trust me, going into your heated class super hydrated is going to make a world of difference and help you feel good throughout your practice. And don’t forget to take some sips of H2O while you’re practicing!  

3. Nourish your body

Heated classes are challenging, but I can’t stop going. Nothing quite compares to overcoming the challenge— and experiencing the cleanse my body feels after I’m done. It’s the perfect blend of hard and rewarding, but I couldn’t do it if my body wasn’t properly nourished. On the days I know I have a heated class booked; I like to make sure I am eating right. I make sure to take my vitamins and fuel my body with fruits, vegetables, and my favorite superfood shake. I hold off on food about an hour before my practice, so I feel comfortable. After the class, I like to replenish with a big protein shake (boosted with collagen to aid with muscle recovery and skin elasticity). There is no one-way path for properly nourishing your body but making sure you’re fueled for the challenge of a heated class is essential for getting the most out of your practice and feeling good on and off your mat.

4. Replenish those electrolytes

Increasing and maintaining your water intake on the days you take a heated class is important, but sometimes you need something a little extra. If you’re sweating that much, you’re basically an athlete (at least in my book) and if you’re performing like a rockstar yogi, you need to hydrate like one as well. That means replenishing those lost electrolytes. Reward yourself and your body for the hard work and treat yourself to your favorite drink. I switch off between electrolyte-boosting drinks and coconut water depending on what I’m in the mood for that day. Adding these to my post-practice self-care routine has helped me feel more hydrated after and ready to take on the world again after especially sweaty classes.

5. Bring the right equipment

Usually, a yoga mat is all you need for your practice––but heated classes are a different ballgame. I’ve gone with just a mat, and I’ve slipped all over the place. Let me tell you, there’s nothing worse than having sweat drip all over the place while you’re trying to hold a pose that makes you grip your mat for dear life (never again). Make sure you bring a towel to place over your mat, this will help with support and grip. Bringing a smaller towel is also a good idea. You can use the smaller towel to dry yourself off during water breaks or whenever you’re feeling just a bit too sweaty. This is a small step that makes a world of difference during those super-hot classes.

So, there you have it. Five of my favorite tips (more like lifesavers) that have helped me readjust to those heated classes I love so much. Getting back into it is a challenge for us all, so know you’re not alone. No matter where you’re at in your practice, remember to be kind and gentle to yourself––celebrating your health and your body’s ability to do what you love. We’re all just getting back out there, together.

Ready to jump back into your hot yoga routine? Browse Mindbody to find the perfect class for you

While you’re at it, check out some Intro Offers near you that can help you get back to your cadence of hot yoga classes.

bree lewis headshot
Written by
Bree Lewis
Marketing Content Associate
About the author
Born and raised in a small mountain town just south of Yosemite National Park, Bree is an avid lover of health, wellness, and connecting to the outside world around us. As a Cal Poly English major alumn, she has a knack for books, writing, and all things words. In her free time, she enjoys being outside, drinking craft beers, and keeping life jazzy!