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I want to start lifting weights but I haven't because I've heard that, when you do start, you need to make a very true commitment. So I need to wait a couple of months for a few things to settle before I can make such commitment of time. I suspect then after the first two months of effort it will become part of my routine.

However, I could lift every once in a while right now, just not every M W F. Any thoughts on this? Should I start doing what I can or wait until I can really commit?

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What's the most popular day to start a new fitness plan? Tomorrow. :-) –  Greg Apr 14 '11 at 15:51
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4 Answers

Start now. Even though at the moment you'll probably be limited in length and regularity of workouts, you'll need the slow ramp up, especially if it's been a long time since you have done anything with those muscles.

So start slow, learn how to do it right, and do what you can for the time being. When things get moved off your plate later, then go ahead and make the real commitment. Once you make that commitment, the fact that you have been doing something will make the transition much easier and can help prevent the excessive soreness that comes with jumping headfirst into a new training regimen.

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Consistency is definitely key (and maintaining it more so) even if it's very little initially. Don't just jump into it all at once. Find out what works best first, and go from there. There is nothing wrong with starting small. –  Matt Chan Apr 15 '11 at 12:36
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I think starting now can only help you. If you're new to it, you're going to be focusing on learning proper technique for now anyway, which will be less impacted by schedule.

You may also consider looking into HIT-style training. High-intensity training tends to imply very short workouts and lots of recovery time. For example, in Body By Science (McGuff) recommends only one 10-15 minute workout per week. Of course that 10-15 minutes is intense!

No matter how busy you are, you can still find 15 minutes a week...

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A reasonable plan that doesn't take too long to do is the StrongLifts 5x5 program. You start with just the bar, and work on your form. You continually progress each workout. Essentially, you have 3 exercises for each day.

Getting started is the hardest part. The downsides of lifting once a week instead of 3 times are:

  • You won't progress as fast
  • You might stall quicker

The up side is that you are getting plenty of rest between workouts, so your muscles will have more than enough time to recover.

When you can add another workout during the week consistently do it. No more than 3 per week.

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The most import thing about lifting is to do it. You can use any workout you want but you have to make it part of your life. If you get in the habit of going to lift it will eventually become easier to commit. Don't worry about the weight don't worry about how long your in the gym just get there and everything else will fall into line.

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