Fitness Contrarian Principal # 8 – Lift Weights
We all need some form of weight lifting for good health. It can be your own body weight, free weights or any type of resistance that makes you push, pull and just work hard. I’m not that concerned what type of resistance you choose as long as you workout relatively hard and keep it short in duration.
They’re so many different ways to create a response and get stronger with resistance training. My favorites are free weights, machines, bands, medicine balls and my own body weight. There is just no getting around it. If you want to have strong bones, good muscle mass, flexibility, strength, a high metabolism and a firm shapely body you have to lift something reasonable heavy on a regular basis.
There is not too much debate on the benefits of resistance training but there is much debate on the duration, intensity and frequency of training. Why I feel there is so much confusion about what works best is because any type of weight training will work to some degree and it is hard to tell what will work best for each individual unless you experiment and try a number of different programs over an extended period of time.
How I think most people should resistance train is with basic full body workouts that are relatively hard and short in duration and perform them twice per week. I know this is a simple recommendation but for most people who want all the benefits that weight lifting will bring, two full body workouts per week is enough.
Two full body workouts consisting of movements like squats, lunges, push-up, pull-ups, presses, planks and a variety of body work movement lasting no longer than 45 minutes and as short as 10 minutes, will surely get the job done as long as you’re working reasonably hard (80% to 90% effort). No matter what, it’s certainly a great place to start your resistance-training program. After you have been lifting for a while you might want to change what you are doing to adapt to plateaus, boredom, age, time, injuries and an endless number of variables.
In addition, keep in mind that your hard weight lifting workouts require time to recover from. Make sure you don’t train hard two days in a row. A good idea would be to do an easy cardio day after your hard resistance-training day. That will give you time to recover while still staying active.
We all need to lift some type of weight for good health, so get started today.
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Best – Mike Cola