I could go on and on about instances where I've heard people say something that is incorrect in terms of health and fitness. I mean, I could give you a million stories, but I choose not to. Instead, I'm going to list 15 common mistakes that beginners make when starting a health/fitness program. This stuff is just too important not to address, so here we go!
1. You don't take the advice of a certified personal trainer- A little clarity for this one. You as an individual are good at something, we all are. If I were to buy an airplane, and wanted someone to look at my potential purchase (making sure it can fly, etc.) I would seek the advise of an airplane mechanic, because I have no idea what I'm looking at or looking for. Same goes for health and fitness. Seek the advice of a professional.
2. You overdo it-Do not go too hard to soon, because you watched a motivational video or program, or maybe you feel if you do, the results will come quicker. This is totally false, and you have a greater chance of getting injured.
3. You think you're too old- Did you know that men who begin exercising by the age of 40 get similar benefits to those who started prior to 30? Another study showed that runners, cyclists, and swimmers ranging in the age of 40-81 found no evidence of muscle deterioration. You're not too old.
4. You don't understand that body parts are related-"The leg bone's connected to the knee bone,The knee bone's connected to the thigh bone,The thigh bone's connected to the hip bone, Now shake dem skeleton bones!" You know this song! This holds true throughout the body when exercising. When you work the chest, you're also working the triceps, upper lats, as well as traps/delts. When you're working the legs you're working the quads, hamstrings, hip flexors, lower back, and calves. Know what you're working and what you're doing. This will help avoid over-training muscles and injury.
5. Not resting-Over-training can have adverse affect on your gains
6. Not stretching- If I had a dollar for everyone who told me, "I don't need to stretch." I would be a rich man. Stretching is essential and important. I feel everyone should stretch multiple times per day.
7. Not focusing on form-Get the movement correct FIRST. Worry about the weight later
8. Sticking with what you know- It's always good to get a fresh take on things. What worked for you when you were younger and working out, may not work for you today.
9. Ignoring an Injury- There is a difference between an injury and discomfort. Be smart and learn the difference.
10. Neglecting your entire body when you're injured-Just because you are hurt doesn't necessarily mean you're sidelined from working out. You can always work around an injury. Do not let the rest of your body suffer.
11. Eating like crap-No need for an explanation
12. Fearing that you'll get big/bulky- News flash, there is a 99.9% chance you'll never get "big/bulky." Muscle is a lean tissue. If anything you 'll become leaner. You would need to eat a ridiculous amount of calories consistently for a long time to even get into that conversation.
13. Doing too much cardio-If you're not getting the right amount of calories you could actually lose muscle if you over do it in the cardio department.
14. Not having goals-Everyone needs something to push them; to drive them. Set short and long term goals.
15. Not making it a lifestyle change- Stay away from the thought that "You're going to workout/eat right until you lose a little bit in the midsection then you'll stop," mentality. Guess what will happen? You will go back to the person you use to be (physically). Stay consistent and don't quit.