Do you know how heavy you should be lifting?
Lifting weights are SO good for us in the sense that they make us look toned up and overall stronger. But if you are wondering how much weight you should really be lifting, and if lifting the heaviest weight you can possibly lift is the most beneficial – you may be wrong! A moderately heavy weight is all you need to see great results from your workouts.
When you lower the weight, you increase the reps to increase the intensity of the exercise. Rather than using a heavy weight that you can only do 1-12 res with, use a moderate or lighter weight to increase the number of times you can lift/ move it with GOOD form.
Let’s talk goals…..
Depending on your goal, either wanting to tone and burn body fat, or shred and grow your muscles, the weight amount can affect how fast you get there… To grow muscles fast, lifting a heavy weight will put your muscles under more stress and tear the muscle fibers. When muscles tear, this is when they can repair and grow in strength and size. In saying this, heavy weights is not the only way to tear and stress muscles for growth. A lighter weight can still be effective if used the right way, by performing higher rep numbers to fatigue the muscle. When wanting to shred fat from the body, it’s good to incorporate weight training with cardio, so lower weights and more reps will get you moving for longer, prolonging your burn time.
Choose what style of workout works for you…but maybe stick to weights. Studies show that using weights that are lighter and performing more reps will have a very similar effect as lifting heavy at lower reps.
Heavy lifting: 75-90% of our 1RM (one repetition maximum – the most you can lift safely in one move).
Moderate to light lifting: 30-50% of our 1RM
Lifting lighter weights allows the muscle to become fatigued over time, while fully engaging the muscle.Both ways of lifting weights are effective in increasing lean muscle, so don’t be too worried about which one you choose, it’s more about what type of training you prefer, whether it’s a quick low rep high weight session, or a longer high rep lower weight session.