Posted on Wednesday 13th of January 2021 at 10:16 AM
4 mistakes you’re probably making that hurt your fitness progress, according to a celebrity trainer
Working out takes more than putting on the right gear and going to the gym, especially if you want to see specific results. Although doing something is better than nothing, celebrity trainer Mark Jenkins knows that making the most of your time will get you closer to your goals.
Jenkins specializes in getting celebrities like Beyoncé fit fast, and he's seen people consistently make the same mistakes over the years. INSIDER spoke with Jenkins at the Burner Fitness app launch with the app's founder, Oke Okaro, about all things fitness and what rookie mistakes you're making that are hurting your progress.
You don't work on your weaknesses.
Average people typically exercise to maintain a healthy heart, weight, or to get some feel-good endorphins. When they go to the gym, they focus on the areas they want to improve, using exercises they like but may not necessarily find challenging. That, according to Jenkins is a big mistake.
"It's hard [...] when you're picking out your own exercises, because most people pick out exercises that they are proficient in and that they are comfortable doing as opposed to the ones that actually are going to work their weaknesses," he said. "This is usually why they are deficient in that area in the first place."
Doing exercises or movements you don't like is the best way to get better at them. Limiting yourself to what you know and like will likely become repetitive and boring.
You don't follow a program when you workout.
Okaro told INSIDER that going into the gym blind is another common problem, and one reason he created the exercise app.
"Mark [Jenkins] and Nadia [Bey] were able to create a structured and progressive training program on our platform that enables people to achieve their goals and obtain very specific results," he said. "Doing random things does not get you results and is what the market is littered with."
On a similar note, Michele Olson, professor of exercise science at Auburn University Montgomery and creator of the Perfect Legs, Glutes & Abs DVD, told Shape that there is no "one exercise-fits-all" program.
"If you do not have a plan to address your greatest fitness needs and desires, you can stall results and actually create changes you do not need or that might not even be appropriate for you," she said. You're working out for a reason, and if you plan doesn't match your goal, then you definitely won't be getting there quickly.
You take advice from amateurs.
It can be tempting to assume that any muscular, lean, or fit person knows what they are doing in the gym. Although they're obviously doing something that works for them, that doesn't mean their routine will work for you. That's even true for professional trainers.
"You definitely should be asking what your trainer's philosophy [is] before you start training with them," Jenkins said. "Ask how they approach it, and if you can speak to one of their other clients."
Jenkins's specialty, for example, is helping people get in their "best condition" in the shortest amount of time possible, all while addressing your symmetry. Make sure you are listening to or working with someone who you are on the same page with, not just someone you admire.
You avoid the gym because you're intimidated.
You don't have to go to the gym to be healthy, but if avoiding the gym means you avoid exercise, then that slows down your progress. Some people avoid the gym because they are intimidated, but you shouldn't let your fear stop you from reaching your goals.
One of Jenkins' top tips for overcoming this fear is to make your first visit to the gym when it's empty.
"You don't want to see anybody too buff looking super fresh," he said,adding that you should take this time to look at the machines and just get acclimated. "A lot of times it's just the embarrassment of you not knowing how to use the machine and [it's] you thinking people are looking at you when they are actually working out and not even thinking about you," he said.
Everyone is there for the same reason, so don't overthink the other people at the gym and don't let them get in the way of your workout.
To stay healthy and fit you have to find and do what works for you and your body. Professionals like Jenkins and Okaro know, however, that there is a difference in results and your experience based on the little things including everything from following or not following a plan to more personal struggles like being scared of the gym. Overall, just be smart and strategic about how you approach your fitness goals and you'll get there quickly, safely, and happily.
This acticle first appeared on Insider