Strength Training is by far the BEST form of training to build a leaner, fitter, healthier body. Its carryover effect and the benefits you receive is what makes it far more superior than any other form of training. It targets all the vital pathways in the body benefiting your immune system, nervous system, hormone balance, organ function, cognition, and motivation. In doing so Strength Training will enhance and speed up whatever goals or improvements you want to make to your body; whether its weight loss, building muscle, improving performance in any sport or training style, or just make everyday life a lot easier to handle. Strength training goes hand in hand with not only getting your body stronger but also getting your mind stronger. People who are strong usually have higher self-confidence and awareness. Just knowing and having the ability to overcome lots of physical challenges goes a long way and can have a remarkably positive effect of your identity. Especially for the beginner or someone who has “tried everything” and not gotten much results, Strength Training is the best place to start or start over. (I attached an article highlighting the benefits of strength training)
Strength training is not to be confused with just lifting any kind of weight. In fact most people that lift weights don’t lift nearly enough weight that is necessary to build strength or muscle. You’ll see this mainly at your commercial gyms with people playing on the machine weights or with the cute & colorful weights and dumbbells in the group exercise class and Bootcamp classes. Strength training is based on progressive resistance exercises where the workouts consists of higher weights and lower reps. Strength training follows more along the line of a powerlifter or Olympic weightlifter, where the goal is to lift as much weight as possible. Strength training is usually measured on select exercises or Lifts. The most common and standard ones are the PowerLifts: Bench Press, Squat, & Deadlift. For the Advanced & Olympic weightlifters, strength is measured by the Clean & Jerk and the Snatch. Of course there are other exercises and lifts that strength can be measured from, but these are the most common. The goal is to lift as much weight as possible for 1 rep or what we call your 1-rep Max. A strength training program is built around these exercises to get stronger at these lifts, and are tested again periodically to measure progress.
Of course most people have to go through a conditioning phase before they can jump into doing a 1 rep max. This is especially true for beginners or even someone that has lifted before but needs to polish up there form a little more. This can take anywhere from a month to 6 months or even years depending on experience & ability, and how fast that person progresses. There are some clients that I will not have them do a 1 rep max, but do a 2-3 rep max instead. But the strength exercises are built around the same fundamental lifts or what we call “Real World Lifts”. Lifts that I believe should be in every strength training program or any program at all for that matter. They’re called “Real World Lifts” because they carryover to real life situations. It’s not like you’re going to put on an exercise machine to pick up a 40lb bag of dog food or move furniture around.
Fundamental or “Real World Lifts”: performed with a barbell or
-Presses – Bench, Overhead, Push-ups
-Pulls – Rows, Pull/Chin-Ups
-Squats – Back, Front, Overhead (only for those qualified)
-Deadlift – Standard, Romanian
These lifts are the core exercises (or staples) a good strength program should be based around. Of course there are ancillary exercises that go along with them to complete the strength program, but you will be doing the fundamental lifts pretty much all the time. These lifts will build a very strong foundation and provide a platform to launch yourself into whatever physical activity or training style you choose; or even just continue getting stronger at these fundamental lifts. The “Tim Duncan” of lifting hahaha…
Trust me, you want to be strong. Life is so much easier to handle when you are. And if you’re a skeptic and you still believe in the myth (a myth that I still can’t believe will not just die) that lifting weights will make you big and bulky. And if you still believe in that myth, here’s the perfect routine for you: https://youtu.be/7G7cBihgUmg