Pumping Iron: Teachers give top workout tips

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Erin G

Junior Rocket Uechi practices a bicep curl at the Mid-Pacific weight room.

Steven Aspera Jr., Staff Writer

 You finally started working out to get that chiseled Greek God body you always wanted. But you don’t really know what you’re doing and how to get started. Don’t fear because the experts at Mid-Pacific are here to give you some advice. 

Mid-Pacific’s weight room is open every day after school and many students say they go there to work out. 

Students can go to the weight room after school to get expert advice from the staff or enroll in the Strength Training class for PE credit. 

“Students can see Mr. Hunt or Mr. Goto and they’ll help you get started,” said strength training and PE teacher Richard Haas.

“I weight lift because it makes my body feel good and I get stronger too” ”

— Luciano Nascarella

Haas gave some of his top tips to start weightlifting: the recommended age to start weightlifting is around the high school age. You can start earlier, but you will need more supervision, to make sure you don’t get hurt. 

“I didn’t really want to  start weight lifting until I was a certain age and height because I didn’t want to  get hurt and stunt my growth,” said Luciano Nascarella, a sophomore currently enrolled in Mid-Pacific’s strength training class.

If you are around the middle school age, start with lighter weights but add more repetition.That way you build muscle endurance along with using the correct technique. When you are older, above age 15, you can lift heavier weights without recklessly swinging the weights around because you know how to lift properly.

Students, especially younger kids, need to be careful when weightlifting because they have what’s called growth plates. In each bone there is a place where the bone grows and if it gets injured by lifting weights that are too heavy or from bad technique, then you may not grow as well, Haas said.

Finally, you step foot in the weight room. The first thing you should do is a quick warm up. Stretch your arms, legs, and back, that way your body is ready to work out. Now you are ready to start lifting weights.

When starting off, you should focus on the large/main muscle groups. Like the chest, arms, quads, hamstring, and abs. Working on larger muscle groups allows you to target multiple muscles so that development will be seen faster.   

According to Haas, good exercises that target large muscle groups are the benchpress, squats, pull ups or lat pulls, and deadlifts. 

When lifting a dumbbell or a bar make sure your back is flat and you lift from your legs. That way you don’t injure your back when lifting. The lower back is the most common place to get injured when weightlifting. 

When you lift weights, your muscle tears, that is why it hurts when your body repairs the tiny tears and adds more muscle to the damaged area. That is how you get bigger muscles and grow stronger.

According to Bodybuilding.com, a common mistake many people make when starting weight lifting is moving through the repetition too quickly. When lifting slowly, you add more muscle tension to your workout. By doing this, you are always working the muscle even when resting.’

Another common mistake people make is not resting long enough between each set. According to bodybuilding.com the recommended rest time is 60 to 90 seconds.

“Some of my injuries that I got were from not lifting enough, cause I didn’t get other parts of my body strong,” said Mackenzie Nitta, a sophomore on the girls varsity soccer team. 

“I weight lift because it makes my body feel good and I get stronger too,” said Luciano Nascarella, a sophomore currently enrolled in Mid-Pacific’s strength training class.