Finding The Right Weight To Lift

by Lenny

How Much Weight To Lift

One of the biggest things that has got me is how much weight to life when in the gym.

I always advocated to lifting as much weight as possible ….

… until I busted my shoulder and was inactive for months.

When I got back into the gym I found I lifted as little weight as possible. In fact, in my article on the F4X system I did mention that I actually used an empty bar!

Anyway, the point is that I simply couldn’t figure out the right weight to lift. If you’re like me then you’ll appreciate that too much weight and you can injure yourself, and to little weight and you don’t get the maximum benefit from weight lifting.

Well, it appears that there is a way to work out the best weight:

University researchers in the Midwest wanted to find out if beginner exercisers were lifting the right amount of weight when exercising. They studied 30 men and women, asking them to choose their weights for five different exercises. The majority of the participants chose weights that were too low (42% – 57% of their One-Rep Max) to result in any physical gains. 

Action Sparked
The One Rep Max (1 RM) is the highest possible weight you could lift on a particular exercise if you only did one repetition. When strength training, you should be lifting a weight that is about 60-70% of this 1 RM. While a trainer could help you figure this out, here’s an easier way: With a bit of trial and error, find a weight that you can lift (with proper form) at least 8 times, but no more than 15. As you get stronger, and reach 15 reps, it’s time to increase your weight again. – check out the article here

So, if you’ve ever wondered what the best weight to lift is then you don’t have to hire an expensive personal trainer. You can work it out for yourself.

Because of the intensity factor, I prefer making sure my workouts are short and intense, I actually aim for 75% of my 1 RM. I tried going for 80% but found I was reaching failure way to early. It’s also discouraged me from finishing off my workouts. 75% however give a nice balance.

So get out there and give it a shot and start seeing results in as quick as a week!

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