In this post I am going to be writing on my experience as a beginner lifter, having hit the 3 month mark. I have learned lots in my first few months which will have a great carry over effect in the months to come
Progressive overload means progressive overload
Confusing? It shouldn’t be, the whole point of training for progressive overload is in the name, each week you want to be progressing. As a strength athlete, and particularly as a beginner you want to be adding weight to the bar each and every week you workout. Any strength coach worth their salt will be telling you this, read Starting Strength, as Mark Rippetoe says you should be adding 5-10lbs each week. This does not mean each week you will be gaining that in strength, you might not make a lift after adding the weight but the point is as a beginner your strength increases very fast and the only way to keep up with this is by constantly adding more and more weight to the bar.
You might agree but this is definitely the best method for beginners, simple lagging behind your true strength working with what is probably 60% of your 1rm isn’t doing you much benefit, sure you will gain strength, but nothing close to what you should be gaining.
“Eat big to get big”
It’s not only an over used quote it actually has some merit, you cannot gain muscle mass out of thin air, and strength gains in particular need fuel. Drinking a gallon of milk every day and slamming oats down your mouth 24/7 is certainly not the way to go; unless getting fat is your goal. the quote could be “eat more because your body is growing and needs more food to maintain itself” but that isn’t nearly as catchy. If you plan on gaining mass/strength you should be eating in a surplus. The only exception to this is if you are fat to begin with, in which case you wouldn’t lose much by going in a deficit, especially as a beginner as noob gains are magic. Whereas if you are a skeleton like myself, coming from the skinny -> skinny fat zone then eating is your only option.
What are your tips for beginners, have you got any good tips or tricks? Feel free to leave them in the comments below. If you disagree with me you can also vent in the comments below to, internet freedoms, amirite?