I’ve been lifting weights for about six years. That’s a long time! Before I started lifting, I was pretty lost when it came to working out. I didn’t know what to do, or how to workout. I would spend an hour on the elliptical and call it a day. As a result, I saw no changes in my body and I hated it. I gave long distance running a try, ran a half marathon and enjoyed it, but I didn’t love it. I remember one summer, reading about women lifting weights (because only “guys can lift”, right?) and I was inspired by how they looked and felt, so I decided to jump in and give it a try. Six years later, I’m still lifting and I absolutely love it.
However, getting into lifting wasn’t easy. I had to pass many hurdles to get to the place I am now. So, today I’m sharing the five things I learned when I started lifting weights:
1. You’re going to feel awkward
How do I hold this weight? How do I adjust this machine? Do I look like an idiot?
These are all common thoughts for new lifters since you are doing something completely new and unfamiliar! It’s okay to feel awkward when you step inside the gym and head over to the weights section. You will probably feel intimated by the big guys lifting weights and wonder if they’re judging you, but WHO CARES. You are on your own journey and you won’t get anywhere if you don’t just jump in and give it a go. Push past those negative thoughts, embrace feeling uncomfortable and awkward and just go get it, girl!
2. Your body will change quickly
For new lifters, your body is going to go through some changes and if you’re following a solid workout program, you will see these changes quickly. I was a total cardio bunny before I started lifting, so once I picked up the weights, my body responded quickly! I immediately noticed I was leaning out and looking more toned. I could also feel my muscles getting stronger, which was such a new feeling for me.
3. You will be really hungry
When you are breaking down your muscle fibers and forcing them to re-build, your body is going to tell you that it needs more energy. My hunger levels went way up when I started lifting. Depending on your goal, following a macro plan will help ensure that you’re controlling your intake as your hunger levels rise. It’s important to be in tune with your body’s hunger signals during this time so that you can give it what it needs to see the results you want to see.
4. Embrace being uncomfortable
I felt like an idiot the first time I walked to the weights section of the gym. I had a lifting program to follow, so I knew the steps and exercises I needed to take, but I still felt like a lost puppy. Everyone starts their journey at their own pace, so as hard as it is, try not to focus on others and just focus on your journey. It’s okay to feel uncomfortable. You’re never going to feel fully comfortable unless you embrace feeling unconformable for a period of time.
If you’re thinking of getting into weight lifting, DO IT. Lifting makes you feel empowered and strong, it will boost your metabolism and it will help give you the sculpted look you want. Oh, and it’s great for your bones too-BONUS!
I’m so grateful that I took the leap to stop the endless cardio and to get into lifting. I’ve never been happier with my body and my mindset around fitness.
Now you tell me…
Do you incorporate weight lifting into your workout routine?
What’s your favorite way to exercise?
Which do you prefer: working out in the gym, or outside?