What You Need to Know About Strength Training
There are three (3) reasons people want to increase or decrease their body weight to:
- Improve health
- Enhance athleticism
- Revamp physical appearance
If you are underweight, the cause should be determined before a plan is implemented as the underlying reason may affect the type of plan. Strength training, also known as resistance training, is an increasingly popular way to gain weight. It is essentially stimulating muscle mass and therefore gaining weight. The trick is to increase muscle with little to no increase in fat.
Gym equipment and dietary supplements are the most effective ways to gain muscle. For more information on nutritional supplements, check out our product reviews. With added calories to your diet, quality sleep, and strength training coupled with quality, quick digesting proteins of about 0.25-0.30 gram/meal, you are on your way to gaining the good kind of weight.
5 Chief Benefits of Strength Training
Athletes that participate in sports requiring power and endurance benefit from this type of training as it may increase strength and enhance the performance in aesthetic sports like gymnastics.
Strength training proves useful to increase bone mineral density, prevents muscle waste, and improves overall health. It is recommended for adults after 40 to engage in this type of training to prevent and improve health problems that worsen with age.
Strength Training Techniques
For muscular strength, you have to couple high resistance with a low number of repetitions. That means lifting heavier weights with fewer sets (less number of times you lift).
For muscular endurance, you have to couple low resistance with a high number of repetitions. That means lifting less heavy weights with multiple sets. Take a break of 3 to 5 minutes between sets.
Your repetition maximum (RM) is the maximum number of times you can lift a particular weight. If you can lift 200kg twice, then that is 2RM.
For increased muscle mass, lift 6-12 RM per set. Do multiple sets. (If you lift 200 kg around eight(8) times since it is in the acceptable range of 6 -12, then that is 1 set)
For strength and power, lift 4-6 RM per set. Between those sets, add some sets of light loads contracting more quickly.
For endurance, lift light to moderate loads with at least 16 repetitions. Take breaks of 30-60 seconds between sets.
For health, incorporate exercises targeting main muscle groups in the body and lift single sets of 8-12 RM.
For sports– In addition to 1 or more of the outcomes mentioned above, your sporting activity will require the specific targeting of muscles to meet the sport’s demands. In this case, a strength coach is recommended to help develop a strength training plan.
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Beginner’s Guide: Tips and Tricks
To overload the muscle by increasing the amount of stress normally placed on it, you may increase the weights you use or increase the number of repetitions. Beginner weight lifters can easily gain muscle by lifting a single set of 8-10 RM per training session.
Continue to overload the muscle by increasing the weights or the number of repetitions, as stated earlier. This is called progression. The recommendation is 3 to 5 sets of 8-12 RM. Lift a weight heavy enough that you can only lift eight (*8) times in 1 set. Over time you will be able to lift this weight 12 times in 1 set. At this time, increase the weights so that it is again heavy to lift only eight(8) times. This method ensures continual muscle gain.
Be sure to place the exercises in an order that does not decrease your ability to lift. In the beginning, target different muscles for different exercises. Let’s say you have a series of 8 exercises, do 1 exercise for triceps, the second exercise for abdominals, and so on. At the completion of the eight (8) exercises, do another set starting from the triceps, then abdominals, and so on. As you approach an intermediate level, you may want to do three (3) sets of the same exercise (3 sets of triceps workout, for example), taking a break of several minutes between sets, then three (3) sets of the second exercise (3 sets of abdominal workout for example).
In Conclusion: What You Need to Know About Strength Training
- Some muscle groups are larger than others. Do those first.
- Ensure to do exercises that require more intensity first.
- Prioritize multiple-joint exercises before single-joint exercises.
- Train 3 days per week with a rest day after each training day.
- Inhale when lowering weights, exhale when lifting weights.
- Breathing properly while lifting weights prevents health complications such as hernias.
- Use spotters when doing exercise that may be dangerous.
- Use protective equipment such as collars on the ends of the bars.
- Prep the muscles you will exercise by gentle stretching.
- Do not put excessive pressure on your lower back.
- Slowly place weights down after use to prevent muscle tearing.