Build Your Summer Body: 9 Weight Training Tips for Beginners

Build Your Summer Body: 9 Weight Training Tips for Beginners

Summer is approaching, and with it comes the desire to look and feel your best. Do you dream of confidently rocking a summer body that turns heads on the beach or impressing friends with your toned physique? Weight training can be the secret weapon that helps you achieve that goal. If you're new to weight training, this guide provides nine essential weight training tips to help you build strength efficiently and accelerate your journey towards achieving your ideal summer physique.

Before Weight Training

Tip 1: Warm-up

Proper warm-up is crucial to prevent injuries and prepare your body for an intense weight training session, which will help increase blood flow to your muscles. For instance, when you begin your weight training routine, you can kick-start with some aerobic activity, such as a 5-minute jog or brisk walk. This gentle cardiovascular exercise will raise your body temperature and heart rate, readying your muscles for the challenge ahead. Skipping rope or doing jumping jacks for a few minutes are also excellent warm-up options.

During Weight Training

Tip 2: Start with Lighter Weights

Building a toned physique requires a well-rounded weight training program. For beginners, we recommend kick-starting with a weight you can lift 12 or more times with proper form. First, choose a dumbbell weight that feels medium-light to you and perform 12 repetitions of foundational movements like squats, presses, rows, lunges, and deadlifts. If you found that you could have done more after 12 reps, this weight is a great starting point for building endurance. Then, slowly progress to 3 sets or more. This training technique will stimulate muscle growth, thus increasing lean tissue mass and helping you build muscle fast.

MERACH 3 in 1 Adjustable Dumbbell Set

Tip 3: Track your progress

As you embark on your daily workout journey towards your dream summer body, be sure to keep track of your progress. It's a tangible reminder of how far you've come! To do this, you can keep a workout journal to record the exercises, amount of weight, number of reps, and sets in a notebook or digitally (e.g., Google Sheets).

Tracking your progress not only allows you to see the improvements you've made but also motivates you to push harder, even when the results aren't immediately visible in the mirror.

Tip 4: Don't be afraid to challenge

To stimulate muscle growth, you’ll challenge your muscles with increasing weight or repetitions over time. If you can comfortably perform 12 repetitions of an exercise, it's time to increase the weight or reps. While striving for 12 reps is a good general guideline, aiming for 8-10 reps with a heavier weight can also be effective for muscle building. And that’s another why tracking progress (Tip 3) is helpful! By tracking your workouts, you can see when it's time to increase the challenge and push your muscles further. This continuous challenge is what leads to muscle growth and that toned summer body you're aiming for.

Tip 5: Fuel your training

Protein is essential for muscle building and recovery. It contains amino acids that help your muscles grow and recover after intense training sessions. If you're active and looking to build muscle while lowering your body fat percentage, eat around 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight as suggested by a landmark study in the Journal of Applied Physiology.

In addition to adequate protein, you need more calories to support your fitness goals. It's advisable to include healthy fats like avocados, nuts, seeds, olive oil, dark leafy greens, whole grains, and a colorful mix of fruits and vegetables in your diet. You can make the most of those garden-fresh fruits and veggies that taste so much better when they're in season!

Plus, try to limit sugary, processed, and packaged foods, as these tend to add calories without providing a sense of fullness. By eating as clean as possible, you'll cut unnecessary calories and fuel your body with the nutrition at its best.

Tip 6: Supplement with cardio exercise

Cardio exercise is an excellent complement to weight training, helping you burn calories and shed fat. You can perform weight training and cardio workouts on alternate days. But be sure to choose the cardio exercise you enjoy for the best result, such as jogging, walking, rowing, cycling, etc. The addition of cardio activity is also helpful in preparing your cardiovascular system for all the great outdoor activities you'll be enjoying this summer.

MERACH Q1S Magnetic Smart Rower

Tip 7: Listen to your body

While pushing yourself is essential for progress, it's equally important to pay attention to how your body feels during your weight training sessions. "There's a difference between pain and discomfort," notes fitness expert and personal trainer Silver-Fagan. "If something is painful, then you should be backing off. If something's uncomfortable, you have to ask yourself, 'Is this because I haven't done it? Is it hard?"

Remember to take breaks between reps or sets if needed. Listening to your body's signals and respecting its limitations will help prevent injuries and ensure a safe and effective workout routine.

After Weight Training

Tip 8: Gently stretch your muscles after your workout

Stretching may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about how to get your best summer body, but it plays a vital role in injury prevention and recovery. At the end of your workout, just take a minimum of 5 minutes to gently stretch out your body, holding each stretch for at least 30 seconds for best results. Doing so helps reduce your muscle soreness, improves flexibility, and promotes proper muscle recovery, all of which contribute to your overall fitness journey.

Tip 9: Rest a day or two in between workouts

Recovery days are just as important as your workout days. Typically, recovery days involve light movements like walking, jogging, cycling, or swimming, which are gentler on the joints and cardiovascular system. We advise incorporating at least 1-2 recovery days into your regular workout schedule. During these days, your body will repair and rebuild muscle fibers, replenish energy stores, and reduce the risk of overtraining or injury.

The End

After following these nine beginners' strength training tips, from proper warm-ups to fueling your workouts and strategic recovery, you'll be well on your way to achieving the toned and lean summer body you've been striving for.

If you have other great fitness tips on weight training, drop below and we’d love to hear!

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