Here we’ll briefly touch on some common mistakes people make when it comes to weight lifting, with a goal of building muscle. But more importantly we’ll take a quick look at different ways to maximise those results with that goal in mind.
Firstly, if you’re sole aim when walking in to the gym is to lift as much as you can, without any solid form and a lack of consideration to varying rep ranges, you’re going to struggle. In my experience this is one of the biggest problems when it comes to weight lifting. Someone’s ego to lift a lot of weight irrelevant of their ability to perform the exercise properly, and it can affect your results.
Weight is obviously a key part of muscle growth and getting stronger but another thing that gets forgotten or overlooked is Time under Tension. Your muscle does not recognise amount of weight, however it does recognise how much tension it is put under. If you lift a weight properly, with specific attention to the timing of reps, you’re results will be greater.
Another thing that is of huge benefit and massively increases the intensity of a session is timing your rest periods. If you’re someone that does a set then has a chat, goes on their phone, or just sits around, this is a simple yet very effective way to create a better workout. For example, a cluster set of 10 sets, 4 reps and only 15 seconds in between each set. Or German Volume Training, 10 sets, 10 reps with 1 minute rest period between sets.
Above are some simple changes you can implement in to your workouts with better gains when it comes to building muscle and increasing strength. Remember, there is a LOT more you can do than solely focusing on amount of weight you lift. If you’re lifting big weight with big form that’s awesome! But if you’re not there yet, scale it down and build it up. It’s a marathon not a sprint and cutting corners isn’t clever.
My final note: To anyone who compares themselves to the next guy or a friend who can lift well and lift a lot, don’t get too hung up on that. Yes it’s good to be ambitious, it’s good to want to be better. But the only person you need to compare yourself to, is yourself. Everyone has a starting point and everyone has weak areas to improve on, myself certainly included. Measure your own success and feel proud!