Strength training is an essential component to your workout regiment, especially if your goal is to lose body fat and build muscle. Not all exercises are created equal, which is why experts recommend doing multi-joint movements called compound exercises to help you build muscles and burn more calories and fat.
You also need to make sure you are making the appropriate amounts of sets and repetitions to build lean muscle mass. Another extremely important factor is to ensure that you are lifting the right amount of weight. Simply telling you to lift heavy is subjective, and that is why you should use the following guide to determine how to choose the correct weight for strength exercises.
Very clear? Very heavy?
A good indicator that the weight you are using is very light if you feel you could do endless amounts of repetitions without taking a break. While this may be great for your confidence, it will not help you build muscles. Common signs that the weight you are lifting is too heavy are poor quality and unable to carry out the designated sets and repetitions.
Set your goals
To help you get the most out of your strength sessions, you first need to know what your weight-lifting goal is. Are you lifting up for strength resistance, maximum muscle growth (hypertrophy) or maximum strength? From there, you will be able to determine how much weight you should lift along with the ideal set and repeat range.
How to Find the Right Weight
A general rule is to find a weight that challenges you during the few final reps of an exercise, but which can also be sustained by several sets. Another, more accurate way of determining how heavy you should be raised for your specific purpose is to first determine the heaviest weight you can lift by three to five reps of a given exercise. For example, to find out the weight you should use for a back squat, first calculate the heavier weight you can lift with the appropriate shape for three to five reps.
You then need to enter the weight you have lifted and the amount of reps you have performed on a maximum calculator from a rep. The calculator will give you a list of percentages of the maximum of one representative. Based on your purpose, you can use this information, along with the chart below, to find out sets, repetitions, and weight. You do not need to calculate your maximum from one rep for each exercise, but I recommend doing it for essential liftings like squatting, ground lifting, bench press and biceps.
|Strength resistance||Maximal muscle growth (hypertrophy)||Maximum force|
|Weight||50 to 70% of your maximum rate for a representative||75 to 85% of its maximum number of one repetition||85 to 100% of its maximum of one repetition|
|Sets||One to three||Three to five||Four to six|
|Reps||12-20||Six to 12||One to five|
Nutrition will be key as well
Because of your strength training, you need to make sure to increase your daily caloric intake to ensure that your body receives the exact amount of macronutrients (especially proteins) to help build muscle. On average, you will need to consume 0.5 to 0.8 grams of protein per pound of body weight. Be sure to consult your doctor before making any changes to your nutrition.