Most people wonder whether weightlifting is a hobby as not everyone understands the meaning of the word, or even if exercise can even be classed as such.
The great news is, weightlifting is classed as a hobby as it’s something you can easily do in your spare time for enjoyment and also allows you to watch your overall development through the weeks or months as you become more advanced at it.
This has all the signs of being a hobby as we almost always want to advance in some way at the things we enjoy or like to partake in, whether that be collecting cards, playing games, reading books, and yes, even exercising or lifting weights.
It’s easier to define yourself within weightlifting circles these days too as you can buy specialized custom clothing that shows off your personality; this also goes for the types of movements you prefer to do to train your muscles as there are an absolute plethora of exercises that train each part of the body.
Some people prefer skull crushers to train their triceps whereas other people prefer bodyweight dips — Only your creativity is the limiting factor when it comes to weightlifting as a hobby.
There are also sub-niche categories within weightlifting such as bodybuilding, powerlifting, and endurance styles which means you can define your hobby even more if you want to.
Overall, weightlifting is an excellent hobby to pick as it has so many benefits such as being able to keep you in shape, reduce your stress levels, and can be extremely fun to watch your body change right in front of your eyes week after week.
If you agree with us that this is an excellent hobby to partake in then keep reading for our 5 tips to help you get started with weightlifting as a hobby.
6 Tips To Help You Get Started With Weightlifting As A Hobby
Here are 5 practical tips to help you get started with weightlifting and some things to consider before you get started.
1. Assess Yourself
Many people when they first venture into the world of weightlifting or exercise feel totally out of their depth which can become overwhelming.
This is usually as they don’t know what to start with or how to approach it.
Before you start with a particular type of weightlifting niche you should try and make a realistic assessment regarding your body weight, fitness levels, and overall strength before you start trying to sling the iron around.
It’s no good trying to push yourself to deadlift 400lbs at the start of your journey to become a powerlifter as human biology simply doesn’t allow that.
If this is your first time trying to lift weights then it’s important to set realistic goals for your own physical limitations rather than worrying about what others are thinking around you. Rest assured, they aren’t laughing at you or making negative remarks; in most cases, other weightlifters are happy to see people giving it their best effort.
The same can be said for if you want to perform calisthenics training which is a style of bodyweight exercise to train your muscles. You won’t be able to perform these movements effectively if you are carrying excess body fat so it might be worth starting with a diet plan or to increase your general activity first.
2. Pick your weightlifting niche
Now that you’ve done an assessment you’ll probably have a better idea of the position you’re in and what you might want to start pursuing.
It’s not impossible to pick multiple niches but we recommend starting with a specific area first so your muscles can be efficient at the task.
This gives you a foundation to build from but will also allow you to monitor your progress and how well you’re doing within the specialization you’re deciding to follow.
It’s also probably the most fun part as you can watch videos on what you might be able to achieve a few years down the line which is a really big motivator for picking what you want to do.
For example, if you were to pick calisthenics, you may be able to perform some crazy feats such as the human flag.
Calisthenics is a weightlifting specialization that focuses on exercising total bodily control and function which allows you to perform impressive feats such as the examples in the video.
It may require more discipline than something like powerlifting as it does not have a linear progression curve and could require more research on your part.
That’s not to say that powerlifting or bodybuilding are less technical, as carving out the body in a specific way requires an intricate knowledge of human anatomy that can only be learned from years of practice or study.
Quite often, the weightlifting niche you pick as a hobby is something that comes from within yourself. It’s like a calling and only you will know why you want to pursue something.
3. Eat like a weightlifter
If you want to make serious gains then you need to have a proper nutritional plan in place to help foster the growth that your body can make when fed correctly.
This often involves eating a high-protein diet which will contribute towards repair and growth for your muscles after a hard training session.
Think of it like this; would you try to fuel your car with anything but the best gas to keep it running efficiently for years? Would you try to feed your pets with anything but the most complete nutritional pre-prepared meals so they don’t have to go to the vet constantly? Then why do that to yourself?
Adequate protein intake is only scratching the surface of what it takes for maintaining sufficient energy levels for your workouts and driving your body to perform as efficiently as possible.
You should try to aim for a variety of foods in your diet such as organic fruits, vegetables, nuts, lean meats, grains, and other unprocessed foods that allow your body to operate properly.
If you’re struggling to eat enough protein then it can be worth buying a protein supplement that can be mixed with water or milk to boost you up through the day.
4. Record your progress
When you’re weightlifting as a hobby, it’s important to constantly monitor the progress you’re making and the types of activities you are performing on a daily basis.
The most accurate way to do this is by using a fitness tracker such as a Fitbit because it will constantly monitor your heart rate throughout the day which translates to the number of calories you’ve burned etc.
If you’re not fortunate enough to afford one then you can simply use a paper journal to write down your daily activities such as the number of reps you were able to perform, how many sets, and how much weight you could lift. FYI, you should be doing this anyway even if you do own a fitness tracker.
This is a great way to see how far you’ve come during your weightlifting journey but also keeps you actively involved in the whole process making it seem more fun.
It’s also an extremely important tool for getting better at what you’re doing as you can plateau if you’re not constantly pushing yourself every week to lift more or do more reps.
There’s a specific term for this process which is called progressive overload and it’s the most important factor for getting better at your dedicated weightlifting niche.
You should try to aim for a little bit of extra weight every week on your various moments or try to add more reps and sets to increase the load you’re able to deliver.
5. Consider working out from home
In uncertain times, and times where we are expected to pay for large gym membership fees then it may be worth considering doing your new weightlifting hobby at home.
Although the initial cost may be high, you would actually be making money after the second year compared to paying for an on-going gym membership in most cases.
It also means on those colder days where it’s hard to get to motivate yourself to go to the gym that you have no excuse and can at least do some kind of activity to go towards your progress.
You can also get the whole family involved as they can also use the weights making it much more effective on the whole than paying for multiple memberships.
This can potentially save you thousands a year which is why we think it’s very important to consider bringing your weightlifting hobby home with you.
Believe it or not, most of your gains are made during post-workout and recovery phases such as when you sleep. This is because the rate of protein synthesis (body’s ability to use protein) increases which is why most workout plans advocate drinking a protein shake after a hard workout session.
You can also buy specialized protein powder such as casein which is great before you sleep as it releases more slowly and keeps your muscles sustained through the night.
When you first start working out you may need at least 2-3 days per week of complete rest to allow your muscles to grow and recover.
As you keep working out and getting better, so does your body. This means you may only need 1 day of recovery per week once you’re at an advanced enough level.
It’s important not to underestimate the need for recovery as you could risk injury if you’re not giving your body enough time to adapt to all this new stress.
Listen to your body and if you feel any pain remember to take a break as you may risk more serious injury.
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Weightlifting is most definitely a hobby and can be treat as such by paying particular attention to your progress over the many weeks or years that you’re continuing this activity.
It’s one of the most beneficial hobbies and can improve many things ranging from better posture, improved bone density, greater muscle mass, improved brain function, and better hand eye coordination.
Most people associate an athletic body with their own confidence which is great but even better when other people start noticing the gains you’re making.
Weightlifting can be an influential and infectious activity that can really help you bond with friends or family that may not realise they also have a passion for partaking in such pastimes.
Hopefully that has answered the question of whether weightlifting can be considered a hobby and why it’s probably one of the best you can do.
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