What Are The 7 Biggest Mistakes Made By Beginner Bodybuilders?

Bodybuilding is an interesting sport with so many details and so many nuances to learn. On the face of it, it’s actually pretty simple, but as you get more into it there is more to learn and getting the details right can make the different between looking good and looking amazing.

Myself I am an intermediate, I have been lifting for a while, but I am well aware that I have much more still to learn. Still, I have learned a few mistakes along the way, and in my experience these are 7 of the most common. I have made them all at one stage or another, have you?

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People who are new to the ‘scene’ will often make a lot of progress relatively easily simply because some lifting and some dieting is better than none. But to get ripped and keep building muscle, you need to cut out the silly mistakes and fine tune your strategy.

If you are a novice and you want to take yourself to the next level the first step is to look at what you’ve been doing wrong. So here are a few mistakes to avoid – how many are you doing right now?

1 – You Train Too Much & Too Often

It’s called overtraining and it’s a bad thing, simple as that. You have been getting away with it because when you start your muscles can grow quickly, but once you have gained a bit of size the relative speed of growth will be slower.

Stop lifting every day of the week and give your muscles a chance to recover. They only grow during your ‘rest’ periods, not during the workout.

2 – You Train With Light Weights

You may not even realise you are doing it, but a common mistake is to start lifting with a sensible weight and then forget to adjust as you get stronger. As you get better at lifting your muscles become more efficient, so you have to gradually up the ante to keep them stressed.

Muscle size is strongly correlated with physical strength, so focus on getting stronger and being able to lift heavier weights and size will follow.

Although it is worth noting that some people actually make the opposite mistake (I’m guilty of this!) and go too heavy. You should lift what you can, but if you go so heavy that your form suffers you won’t be properly fatiguing your muscles (and might injure yourself).

Try occassionally taking a bit more weight and see if you can still complete a set with good form, if not, go a bit lighter, but always keep challenging yourself!

3 – You Focus On Arms & Chest Only

You only care about your arms and chest right? Probably because that’s what the girls like, and besides, you always wear jeans so who cares about those chicken legs?

But you can’t train your chest every day of the week (see above) so why not spend some time on your legs? Legs are a big muscle group and a good workout will increase testosterone production (you want that) so in short, squats can actually aid your upper body muscle growth!

bench press

4 – You Try To Gain Too Fast

If you want to get buff it is tempting to just eat loads and gain weight fast, but your body can only build muscle so fast and if you consume more calories than you need to achieve that growth, the excess will go into fat storage instead.

You will be more successful in the long run if you tether your calories and try to gain weight slowly whilst keeping the fat gain at bay. This will prevent the temptation to crash diet later and lose all that muscle mass at the same time.

5 – You Simplify Nutrition Too Much

It’s not actually as simple as just chugging a load of whey protein and eating nothing but oatmeal you know! For one thing, that’s just not healthy, but secondly you need to mix it up and eat real food.

Protein shakes are handy, but they don’t fill you up much, which means you’ll overeat and gain fat. Even when trying to gain you shouldn’t consume empty calories for the sakes of it. Moreover, be careful with what supplements you take, as there are always some side-effects possible to appear and cause a lot of troubles (read more at http://drugguardians.com/drug/onglyza-and-kombiglyze-xr/). So try to keep your diet balanced and natural.

6 – You Don’t Balance Your Physique

Your entire body is balanced by opposing muscles and as you develop your muscles you can create imbalances, particularly if you ‘only care about your chest’. So if you a bench press one session; balance it with some horizontal rows the next.

Not balancing your muscle groups can give you an unnatural physique, which doesn’t look good and can lead to injuries. Just remember that for every push there should be a pull (it’s Newton’s third law!)

7 – You Don’t Consider Micro-Nutrients

Beginners often make the mistake of only thinking about protein, fat and carbs but to maximise muscle growth and to feel healthy, you need vitamins and minerals too.

Eating whole foods and lots of veg will help you to recover faster, have more energy (which means you can lift heavier stuff) and just makes your body better. You are even allowed to use supplements to erm, supplement the health food, just don’t ignore those vitamins.


In the words of Mark Sisson “Real Men Eat Lettuce”!

What Mistakes Are You Making?

These are 7 of my top mistakes, some of which I have stopped making and others that I still make occasionally. At the end of the day, you can’t possibly do everything perfectly, but recognizing and minimizing your mistakes is a good start.

What do you think are your biggest bodybuilding mistakes?
Are you making any of these?

Good luck with your own journey and enjoy it!

Images from: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bench_press_1.jpg | http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Salad_platter02.jpg

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Jesse Andrews

About Me Hey! My name is Jesse, I am a fitness lover, bodybuilder and snowboarder. I work for Seven Seas who sell awesome health supplements, oh and I give out health advice to anyone who’ll listen! Please follow me on Google+ to learn more.

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