How To Lift Weights To Build Muscle
One of the most important things you can do for your workout routine is to know how to lift weights to build muscle. While anyone can pick up a weight, do some reps and even break into a sweat, this doesn’t automatically translate into the lean muscle growth he is probably seeking. If your goal is to maximize your weight lifting workout in order to hit your muscles in the most optimal way and in the least amount of time, it is worth taking the time to learn the best strategy to build muscle. After all, the more complete your knowledge, the more your body will benefit.
How much weight you should be lifting. While everyone is different and therefore cannot be advised as to what specific weight he should be lifting on each exercise, the most important thing to keep in mind is that muscles have no incentive to get bigger and stronger unless they are forced to do so. In order to accomplish this, you’ll progressively need to increase the weight you are using as you build your muscles. The key to muscle growth is challenge; the minute you begin to let muscles get away with lifting weight they’re already comfortable doing, they will cease to grow larger and stronger.
How many repetitions: not too few, not too many. The good news is that the best way to lift weights to build muscle does not consist of countless and effortless reps that would make your workout boring enough for you to dread the next time-wasting session. The bad news—or challenge if you’re not put off by hard work—is that building muscle the right way demands your best effort. You need to overload the muscle you’re working with a weight that will allow you to do four to six reps, with the sixth rep being the last you can do with good form and without assistance. If you cannot do at least four reps, the weight is too heavy, and if you can do more than six, the weight is too light. The four to six range is optimal for building muscle, as it stimulates new muscle fibers that will be called upon to handle the stress being put on the muscle. This range does not apply to your warm up set, which should be between eight and ten reps.
How many sets: quality, not quantity. Once you have warmed up, you should do one to three intense sets. When you’re lifting weights to build muscle, trust what your body tells you when you’re determining how many heavy sets you should do, not some preconceived notion that a higher number of sets is automatically better than a lower number. While your goal is to overload the muscle you’re working on, you shouldn’t try to overdo it, since after about two intense sets the muscle will have been effectively overloaded, and further sets of the same exercise will not only not encourage it to further grow, but could lead to an injury that will set back all your hard work in building that muscle.
When using the above strategies to lift weights to build muscle, not only will you make your workout efficient and rewarding in the long run—once you begin to see your muscles grow in response to your routine—but it will also feel satisfying during the workout, as you will know that you’re putting in your best effort in every rep and every set. After all, it’s always good to know that you’re not wasting your time.