Strength training makes us look and feel better, perform at the top of our game, and lose weight faster, so it’s something everyone should include in their workout regimen. If you’re already working with weights or want to get started, here are three ways your strength training workouts can be more effective.
Weight training doesn’t take much to achieve results, especially when weight loss is your goal, because building muscle strengthens the body and burns calories easily. However, there’s no need to overdo it. Making a few changes to your routine will push you ahead faster.
Slow and Easy Does It
You may often see body builders and weight trainers huffing it out at the gym, doing fast repetitions with high energy, and think to yourself: “Are they serious?” It may discourage you from weight training at all, thinking that’s what it takes to see some results. The truth is that slow and easy movements are more effective and less dangerous, and tensing your muscles at the top of each repetition adds even more punch.
Fast, jerky movements increase your chance for injury from torn muscles and ligaments that could set you back quite a bit as your muscles take time to heal. It’s just not a good idea, and besides if you are overexerting yourself with speedy workouts, you will get tired quicker and won’t be able to work out as long. Now, even though working out with weights doesn’t need to be long and drawn out to get you in shape, why not extend your workout time to burn even more calories?
More Weight, Less Time
Alternatively, for a shorter workout, the key is to use progressively heavier weights. You don’t need to do a million repetitions and sets, and the average person doesn’t have time to work out for more than thirty minutes to an hour a day. Heavier weights will make you stronger, as your endurance builds up and you will also see more tone where you want it.
It’s not wise, however, to start out with heavy weights, because that too can cause injury when your body isn’t used to the strain. What you will want to do is to start with a moderate weight, say, 20 lb. and work out for maybe a week at that range, then gradually start increasing the load. As the weight increases, fewer reps are required.
Working out too much may seem like a good thing, but it’s actually counterproductive and potentially dangerous. Working out too much actually weakens the immune system and increases your chances of harming yourself physically through sprains, strains, tears and stress on the organs. Your body also needs time to heal between workouts, so weight lifting should be spread out to only maybe 3 times per week. Shorter interval workouts are a much better option overall.