HOW TO INCREASE YOUR TRAINING WEIGHT
In her monthly column SHE TRAINS, physiotherapist Annemarijn Glasbergen addresses common exercise myths to help you get most out of your workout.
In this article, I will explain more about increasing the amount of weight you train with. Depending on your exact goal and experience level, the approach will slightly differ. I will pay particular attention to the most typical method of weight training progression.
The key to getting positive results from your workout is progressive overload. Meaning, you must strive to increase the demands being placed on your body in some way over time.
You start by performing 3 to 4 sets of 6-8 repetitions at 80% of your 1RM, with a 1-2 minute recovery period between sets (1RM: one repetition maximum in weight training is the maximum amount of force that can be generated in one maximal contraction). You should perform each repetition with a repetition timing of 3-second concentric (up, against gravity) and 4-second eccentric (down, with gravity).
The principle of progressive overload will be employed throughout the training period to maximize the training response. Specifically, when you are able to complete 4 sets of 8 repetitions at the beginning of the next training session, the training weight (kg) should be increased by 5-10%.
So, if during an exercise you’re lifting a weight that’s still a bit heavy for you, you’re not quite ready to increase the kilos. The same applies if you’re supposed to be doing 4 sets of 8 reps on an exercise and you’re getting reps of 7, 6, 5, 4, then you’re not ready to increase. These are cases where you need to spend a little more time with a weight and focus on increasing reps first and getting them into the range they should be in. When they are, and you’re strong enough to lift that weight with ease, THAT’S when it’s time to increase.
Follow the following steps:
1. Meet the prescribed set and rep goal for the exercise;
2. Increase the weight being lifted for that exercise by the smallest increment possible;
3. Meet the set/rep goal again with this new, slightly heavier weight;
4. Increase the weight being lifted again by the smallest increment possible;
5. Repeat this process over and over again as often as you are capable of making it happen.
Once again, depending on your exact goal and experience level, this method is more or less ideal for you than any other.
Tips to get things done:
Keep track of the amount of weight you use for a particular muscle group and the number of reps you get;
Your progression will not always be this consistent. There will definitely be times when you end up repeating the same number of reps/weight that you did the previous workout. Sometimes this might even continue for quite a while with certain exercises (this is especially true the more advanced you get).
Just work your ass off to progress in some way as often as you can and beat what you were able to do the previous time.
Sharing is caring: train together and encourage each other; it really motivates!
Make your muscles recover optimally after your training. Check our FITSHE After Workout Shakes in the Shop