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29 Nov 2005


Please help - i have been told that strenght training is a good idea for increasing your metabolism and building your bones. I know this sounds stupid - but what exercises exactly does strenght training incorporate? Is it free weights, and if so, what? is it circuit training? i am a devoted cardio goer, so i would like to incorporate strenght training as well - where can i start?
thank you
Answer 307 views

01 Jan 0001


Strength training can take on a variety of forms, and so it is all of the above. It's free weights, machines and circuits. The circuit is basically a compact, well set out, and order sequence of machines which is designed to help you work through most major muscle groups in a session. So, in the gym, you will see between 10 and 20 machines, which, if you do them in sequence, will give you an overall workout. The actual content of the circuit is not at all different from what you see in the 'resistance training' section of the gym. It's just the layout and the ease of use. So, if you want, for example to focus on the lower body or upper body only, then you are better off using the weight machines, and not the circuit.

As for free weights, they are probably the most functional and effective, but should only be used properly and once experienced. The reason is that they use all the muscles to control the weight, whereas machines use pulleys and so you can get away with 'bad' technique. When using free weights, your technique must be tight and good. I would say that you should probably begin with the circuit and machines and then move to the free weights only when you are stronger and more confident. Of course, there are certain free weight exercises, like dumbell curls for the biceps that are really basic and you can do right away, but for the most part, the circtuit will do for now.

If you are in any doubt, do speak with a trainer, that's what they are there for and you don't want to injure yourself, obviously. My advice would be to do 2 days a week of weight work, in addition to your current cardio.

Good luck
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