Understanding Basic Weight Training Terms

Be your own trainer when you learn these terms!

Beginning to weight train, but you don’t want to invest in a personal trainer? It may seem difficult at first to understand all of the terms associated with the regimens, so here it is, your little black book of definitions.

Key Terms:

Weight Training: This includes any physical activity or exercise that uses the force of a muscle against some form of resistance to build muscle strength, endurance, and size.

Repetitions (Reps): Doing a movement 1 time. For example, with sit ups, 15 reps is just 15 sit-ups.

Sets: The completion of a series of repetitions. A “set” is made up of a number of the same exercise performed without stopping.

Terms you should know:

Abduction: The movement of a body part away from your core. For example, lifting your arms from your side to level with your shoulders.

Barbell: A steel bar measuring 4 –6 feet in length. The bar is used for weight training and body building exercises. Some barbells have a fixed amount of weight on the sides, while other barbells allow you to add and remove weight as you desire.

Body Fat Percentage: The percentage of fat your body has in comparison to muscle.

Body Mass Index (BMI): This is an assessment of your weight relative to your height. The formula is: weight in kg / (height in meters x height in meters).
The results of the BMI calculation are categorized as follows:
• Underweight: below 18.5
• Normal weight: 18.5-24.9
• Overweight: 25-29.9
• Obese: 30-39.9
• Morbidly obese: 40 and above

Cheating: A method to complete your workout without really focusing on the muscle that should be used. For example, swinging instead of a steady slow lift with weights. You will sweat just as much, and nothing will be achieved in the time you wasted. You are only cheating yourself.

Circuit Training: Utilizing a group of 5 to 10 exercises one after the other. Each exercise has a designated amount of reps and time before moving on to the next. There is only a few seconds between the completes of your reps on each exercise, but a longer break in between circuits.

Clean: Using your legs, arms, shoulders, and back to lift a barbell from the floor to your shoulders in one smooth motion to prepare for an overhead lift.

Free Weights: These are any barbells or dumbbells that are not attached to a machine.

Lean Body Mass: Everything left in the body when all of the body fat has been eliminated. This includes bones, organs, skin, nails, and all body tissues including muscle. About 50-60% of your lean body mass is water.

Max: Maximum weight you can do for one repetition of an exercise.

Overload: The amount of weight that you force a muscle to use that is over its normal strength capacity. Overloading a muscle causes the muscle to grow.

Volume Training: Doing a very high number of sets for each body part when weight training with lighter weights. This is to enhance shaping.

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The SkinnyMs. team believes that all people, regardless of age, size, and fitness level, have the power to transform their lives — they just need the resources to do so. The SkinnyMs. method promotes healthy living through a combination of clean eating and regular exercise. We offer everything you need to be successful.

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