Women across campus too often find themselves afraid to venture outside the safety of the cardio area and stray into the unknown territory that is the weight room.
While the loud clanging weights and blaring music may appear intimidating at first, you will soon find the weight room is nothing to fear.
Today is the day I put an end to your gym insecurities, ladies, because the semester just started and the Nicholas Recreation Center is looking like the perfect spot to prep your spring break look.
Jokes aside, lifting is a great way to de-stress your mind and body from the stresses of schoolwork and social life and offers physical advantages that cardio just can’t.
Here are five ways for women to succeed in the weight room:
Have confidence in yourself
Success in the gym starts with belief in yourself. The first step to the weight section is to jump out of your head. No one cares about your workout because they are each too busy doing their own exercises to worry about trying to correct yours.
In the weight room, confidence is key.
Put in your AirPods, pump some Kesha and become the empowered woman you are meant to be.
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Use proper form
When you don’t strengthen your core and instead round your back, lower back pain will start to occur.
The weight section can be intimidating, especially when you’re surrounded by giant men and you have no idea what you’re doing, which is why proper form is a critical part of surviving the weight section.
Watch video tutorials of the exercises you are performing or google proper technique tips in order to ensure you are executing each exercise correctly. Even if you’re only shoulder pressing five pounds, your form will make that weight seem lighter and lighter each time.
Find motivation, not intimidation, in others
When I walk into the Nick and see someone who looks the way I want to or is lifting weight I dream of lifting, instead of feeling intimidated, I feel empowered to succeed more.
I see many women in the Wisconsin gym wearing the cutest outfits and looking absolutely jacked, and I can’t help but feel inspired. I look up to these women as my motivation to stay consistent in the gym.
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Staying consistent with your workouts is key. It helps when you organize your workouts into days. For example, push day, pull day, quads/hamstrings, glute day, and so on. By splitting up your workouts, you are creating a routine that your body will love you for.
This also makes it easier to hold yourself accountable. With a schedule in place, you will be less likely to “take the day off” whenever you don’t feel like exercising.
Envision yourself succeeding
When I am on my last set, wanting to quit my workout early, I envision myself six months later with the lean muscle I’ve worked for non-stop. This mental preparation during each lift is a tiny step that can act as a tool to make your dreams fade to reality.
We are all there to boost each other into conquering arm day and destroying our glutes on leg days. Every time you walk into the gym, leave your fears at the door, flex those abs and march into the weight section with nothing in mind but success.