Strength training is a vital part of health and strength now and as you age. 

But what if everytime you try it, you feel weaker, sore, or injured?

You are not alone.

There is a lack of proper instruction on how to lift weights safely and effectively. This leads many people to do exercise that is too little to bring about health changes.

There are very simple steps to improve your likelihood that you gain positive results from strength training.

  1. Check your range of motion before doing the exercise.  Do the movement slowly and without weight, stay where it feels good.  This defines your range for the exercise.
  2. Move slowly when you do the exercise.  This will help you respect your range of motion from Step #1.  It also allows you to adjust for any signals that your body, muscles, and joints may start sending.
  3. Focus your attention on the muscles squeeze rather than the motion.  Stop counting reps and stop thinking “up, down, up, down.”  Start connecting with your body and think “squeeze.”

These 3 steps will help you minimize the negative side effects of exercise like feeling weak, sore, or injured.  It’s time to start maximizing the positive health promoting opportunities of strength training.


Julie Cates

Julie Cates is an experienced, certified, and insured National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) Certified Personal Trainer and mastery level Resistance Training Specialist® (RTSm). She is also a Muscle Activation Techniques® (MAT®) Master Specialist (MATm). Julie specializes in training new exercisers that have never exercised before. As a personal trainer, she is excellent at communicating the ‘ins’ and ‘outs’ of each and every exercise in an effective and understandable manner. She also often works with individuals with chronic illnesses, joint issues, and muscle issues. Julie graduated cum laude from the University of Florida. She earned her degree in Applied Physiology and Kinesiology with a specialization in Exercise Physiology. In her free time, Julie loves to dance! Julie is still active in a dance company with yearly performances of tap , lyrical, jazz, and hip hop! Julie can be reached via e-mail at Follow her on Instagram at @julcates!