Weight training is an important part of any workout. It helps us build strength and muscle, and the better looking body that we get from it is a welcome side-effect. Check out the following articles for some awesome tips on how to properly weight train.
A couple of quick tips before you start.
1. Always Have Adequate Rest
A lot of people feel that they need to hit the gym for 2 hours a day, 7 days a week in order to see results. This is far from the truth. What you should aim for is one day of rest between each day of lifting. This will give your body adequate time to recover, thus avoiding overtraining.
2. Write Down How Much You Lift
I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to take a pen and paper with you to the gym. Always keep track of how much you lifted during each exercise. This includes the weight, reps, and number of sets. The only way you can progress from week to week is by doing a little more each week. Try to add a couple pounds to each lift every week, or add at least one more rep to each exercise. I promise you’ll see better gains if you just take 10 seconds to write things down.
3. Train To Failure On Each Set
There has been a lot of controversy on this one. I’ve found that if I push myself until I can’t do another rep on each set my results are much better than if I had just quit a couple reps shy of my maximum. This makes sense if you think about it. Your body will only grow if you force it to grow. The only way to get it to grow is to push it until it can’t do anymore. Simple as that.
4. Perform Light Warmup Sets
I like to perform light warmup sets at the beginning of my workout in order to help get my blood flowing. If you start lifting heavy before you’re warmed up you could injure yourself. You’ll also be performing short of your maximum potential if you haven’t warmed up.
5. Keep Your Reps Between 6 And 8 For Heavy Exercises
If you can do more than 8 reps on an exercise you should kick up the weight a notch. Once you get above 8 reps you are basically training your body for endurance rather than muscle growth. The only exception to this rule is for exercises like calf raises. Small muscle groups actually seem to grow better with rep ranges between 10 and 12.