BodyBuilding Getting Started:
You are impressed by the slim, healthy photos of other average people who have used bodybuilding to get impressive results. You are wondering how to get started and what a bodybuilding program entails. Over the next couple of weeks, we are going to dive into everything you need to know to customize a bodybuilding program for you and get fantastic results.
The first thing to do is to set yourself up for success. It’s important to know where you are in order to see how far you’ve come. It also helps to know where you are going. It would be nearly impossible to drive to New York (unless you already live there) if you don’t know what part of the country you are coming from. You don’t know if you need to go north, south, east or west. You don’t know how far you need to go. It’s also pretty hard to get to New York if you don’t know where you want to end up. If you just start driving and don’t follow any maps, gps, or road signs, then it’s unlikely that you will accidentally end up in New York. It’s the same thing with fitness. You need to know where you are starting at and what your goals include.
You also have to take a look at the method of transportation. There are many modes of travel; car, airplane, hot air balloon, walking, bicycling or the train. Some have more benefits than others and are more effective. Having the right equipment is essential.
Step one: Set your starting point
The most important part of the first step is to get a physical. In addition to all the usual disclaimers, you doctor really should have a say in any changes or customizations that you need to make to your program. Fitness is about being healthy and strong and everyone is unique. Plus, all the checkup figures gives a really great “below the skin” measurement of your ‘before state.’ You’ll get a benchmark of all the important figures; cholesterol and triglycerides, fasting glucose, blood pressure. You can even get an idea of your bone density and risk of osteoporosis. These are concrete areas that translate into a clearer picture of your actual health. This will give you a deep understanding of your health improvements.
You’ll also want to get all the easily tracked before data. Take a before photo, both of the front and side of you. Measure all the key area circumferences; waist, hips, chest, thighs and don’t forget to record your weight. It’s also a good idea to measure your body fat index.
Finally, as you start your bodybuilding transformation, take an early measurement of your fitness capabilities. How much can you bench, deadlift, squat? How much weight can you handle during your leg extensions, leg curls, and calf raises? What are your max weights for the hip abductor, chest fly, and upright row? How much can you bench press? What are your max weights on triceps extensions, biceps curls, leg raises and back extensions? How long can you run and how much distance do you cover? We recommend tracking your workouts so that you can see marked performance improvement immediately.
Strength and endurance improvements come quickly and can serve as small benchmarks to motivate and keep you going. Weight, size and muscle definition come next and finally, your underlying health indicators will show improvement, but you probably don’t want to go in for a check up every month just to watch for improvement!