Weight Lifting Routines

Weight Lifting Routines
Weight Lifting Routines
                                 Weight lifting routines that build muscle...
                                        From the beginner to the advanced 
    Ok, how do you set up a weight lifting  routine? 

      Setting up your  weight lifting routine can be a confusing subject. It doesn’t have to be.  Basically, you have to know what you want. 
If you are a beginner looking to  tone up and add a bit of muscle, you will have to start with a beginners weight  lifting routine. If you've 
been weight lifting for a couple of months and need  a weight lifting routine that's a bit more challenging, you'll need an  intermediate 
weight lifting routine. 
      On the other hand, if you are an experienced weight lifter looking to try something  different, you'll need specialized weight lifting 
routines.It's a matter  of finding out what you want and establishing your goals. If you don't know  what you want, than you will have to 
sit down and figure that out. 

    How do  you build muscle with weight lifting routines? 

     If you want to  build muscle, your going to have to use weight resistance exercise like weight  lifting. 

     Weight lifting  requires the use of weight bearing equipment such as barbells and dumbbells  (free weights), and machines that use 
cables and pulleys to help lift the  weight. You can also use body weight bearing exercises such as chip ups and  dips in your weight 
lifting routine.
      If you are just  starting out, I suggest you use a combination of machine and free weight  exercises in your weight lifting routine.
This will give your body the time it  needs to adjust to the different levels of stress that weight lifting places on  your body. 

      As you progress  in your weight lifting routine, I suggest you add more free weight exercises.  Free weights and compound 
movements such as squats, bench press, shoulder  press, and bent over barbell rows apply a lot of stress on the supporting  muscles.
      These exercises  are often called multi jointed exercises because they employ not only the  targeted muscle but the supporting 
muscles as well. By using free weights and  compound movements in your weight lifting routine, you will challenge your body  to work 
harder and therefore make better muscle gains. Adding more free weight  exercises will increase the intensity of your weight lifting routine.
      The result?  Added overall power and quality beef added to your frame. 
      Here are  examples of compound movements to use in your weight lifting routines: 

   • Barbell bent  over rows
   • Bench press
   • Barbell shoulder press
   • Dead lifts
   • Squats
   • Close grip bench press

   Weight  lifting routines

     The following  weight lifting routines are designed for the beginner, intermediate, and  advanced weight lifter. If you are just starting 
out, I suggest you start with  the beginners weight lifting routine and slowly progress to the intermediate  and advanced weight lifting 

     Remember  to always ask for advice if you are not sure about certain exercises. Gym staff  are usually pretty good and will provide 
you with quality advice regarding all  aspects of weight lifting. I’ve designed these weight lifting routines with the  beginner in mind but 
it can serve as a nice refresher for you seasoned weight  lifters out there.
    What is a  repetition? 

     Weight lifting  exercises consists of repetitions and sets. One repetition consists of a series  of muscle contractions with a weight or 
movement such as one push up. A series  of repetitions is called a set. For example, 10 repetitions of push ups is  considered one set.
     The number of  sets performed will depend on your current level of fitness and goals.  Beginners can only tolerate a couple of sets per 
body part. Anymore than one or  two sets for a beginner is certainly not recommended as this can be  counterproductive. If you are a 
beginner to weight training, I suggest you  design your weight lifting routine using light weight and higher repetitions. 

     As you progress  in your weight lifting routine, your strength and muscle gains will be moderate  but what you want to concentrate on
is form. This is very important. As a  beginner, you want to perform the exercises with proper form. This will be very  important as you 
progress to the intermediate and advanced weight lifting  routines. 

     As your form  and style improves, you’ll want to move to a lower repetition range using  heavier weights. Although you will want to 
keep using the higher repetition  range for warm ups. As your training levels advance, you can add more sets to  your weight lifting routine 
in order to stimulate more growth. For building  muscle it is desirable to perform low repetitions using heavy weight.
     The amount of  repetitions you complete will depend on your goals as well as the weight lifting routine itself.There is no magic number 
repetitions that will  produce better results than any other number.You will have  to determine your combination of body chemistry, feel, 
and trial and error to  determine what works best for you. What works for one person may not  necessarily work another. 

     How much  repetitions should I do? 

     Deciding on a repetition range to use in your weight lifting routine will depend on your  goals.Do you want to build explosive strength, 
power, and muscle mass? Perhaps  you want to train for speed, strength and a well defined body? Or perhaps you  need stamina, and 
endurance. These points will help you in deciding what  repetition range is best for you and your weight lifting routine: 

         3 to 5  repetitions 
   •Intensity  levels are high
   •Advanced strength training
   •Build muscle mass, explosive strength, power, and speed
         8 to 12  repetitions 
   •Intensity  levels are moderate to high
   •Intermediate to advanced strength training
   •Build speed, strength, and muscle mass
         15 to 26  repetitions 
   •Intensity  levels are moderate to light
   •Beginners to strength training or advanced for competitive athletes
   •Build stamina and endurance, and moderate muscle mass
         26 to 45  repetitions 
   •Intensity  levels are light
   •Beginners to strength training or advanced for competitive athletes
   •Build endurance and minimum muscle mass

     To build  strength and definition, repetitions should be in the lower range. To build  strength and muscle mass, your repetition range 
should be between 8 and 12. The  heavier you lift, the more strength and mass you will gain. 
     But remember... 
     A word of  extreme caution. The heavier you lift, the more stress you put on your body.  Lifting heavier weights increases the 
chances of injury. Therefore, the heavier  you lift, the more advanced you should be.Heavy weight  lifting requires the proper form, style 
and inner body awareness. These  attributes will not come overnight and should be practised in your beginning  stages. Do not be tempted 
to show off as this will lead to injuries. 

    What is a  set? 

     A set is the completion of a series of repetitions.Beginners should perform one to two sets  per exercise for the first couple of months 
of a weight lifting routine.This should be sufficient to stimulate increases in muscle size and strength. After a couple of months, you will 
probably need to add one or two more sets to  further stimulate improvements. 

     What is  progressive resistance? 

     Two of the most  common mistakes people make in their weight lifting routine is to: 

     1) Increasing  the amount of weight too quickly 

     2) Not  increasing the amount of weight to stimulate further improvements 

     As you begin  your weight lifting routine, don’t let your excitement and enthusiasm get the  better of you. If you are not ready to 
increase the amount of weight, don’t try  and force it. Increasing the weight before you are ready for it will lead to  poor form.Poor form 
leads to injuries. Trust me, you don’t want injuries.
     Avoid adding  weight if you cannot perform the necessary repetitions in the proper form.Use weight that allows you to perform the 
exercise in proper form and in your  target repetition range. 
     For example, If  you set a target repetition range for 12 and you cannot complete 3, chances are  that your are using too heavy a 
workload and you will have to lighten the load.
     Determining  your target workload for your weight lifting routine will take some trial and  error. The following notes will help you 
determine when to increase your  weight: 

   •Performing 12  repetitions in good form using the same workload 

   •Performing all  of your sets for 12 repetitions in good form using the same workload 

     If for example,  you can perform 2 sets of 12 repetitions in good form, you might want to  increase the weight. Another option is to 
increase the number of sets to 3 sets  of 12 repetitions if building endurance and stamina is your goal. 
     However, if  you’re goal is building muscle mass, and strength, consider increasing the  weight. 

    How much  weight should I increase?
     Increase the  weight by 5% to 10% of your current workload. For example, if you’re current  workload is 100 pounds and you can 
perform 2 sets of 12 repetitions using good  form, take 5% to 10% of 100 pounds and add it on to your exercise in your  weight lifting 
     In this case,  105 to 110 pounds.With this new workload, your repetition range will decrease but strive to get the range back up to 12.
Repeat this process of evaluation on  a weekly basis using your weight lifting log. 

     If you want to  build muscle, you have to use heavy weight but the trick is to perform the exercise using proper form.As you improve 
your form and your strength  increases you may add additional weight to your weight lifting routine to  further challenge your muscles.
     Remember that  the bigger and stronger you get, the more resistance you will have to apply to  your muscles in order to stimulate 
further growth. 

    Intensity  ranges
     Intensity  ranges from high to low. For our purposes, high intensity training means to  train with heavy workloads using low 
repetitions for your weight lifting  routine. Low to medium intensity training means to train with lower workloads  using higher repetition 
ranges for your fitness purposes. 

     Building muscle  requires high intensity ranges. You will need to determine your intensity  levels that will correspond to your weight 
lifting routine.Training to  complete failure using all out effort requires high intensity ranges. Training  to failure is required for maximum 
growth. High intensity effort triggers the  body to produce more of the hormones that stimulate muscle recovery and growth. 

     If you don’t  feel “the burn” or discomfort in the muscle you are working, it either means  you are not ready for the high intensity set 
yet or you are not working hard  enough. 

     To truly  understand the power of high intensity training, click here.
     Training  to failure 

     In order to  maximize your growth potential, you will have to train to complete failure in  your weight lifting routine. Training to 
complete failure means to train where  it is physically impossible to perform one more repetition.Training at  least one of your work sets 
to complete failure will produce optimal growth.  Training to failure is a high intensity technique designed to stimulate optimal  growth. 

     Beginners should not perform any failure sets for the first 3 months of the weight  lifting routine.If, after 3 months you have 
established correct training  techniques and want to bring your weight lifting routine to the next level,  consider training to complete failure 
on at least one of your work sets.  Remember to always use a spotter when training to failure. 

    How long  should I rest between sets 

     Rest periods  between sets will depend on your training goals. If you are a beginner, take as  much resting time necessary to fully 
recover from your sets without feeling dizzy  or nauseated. It will take some time for your body to adjust to a new weight  lifting routine.

     It will take anywhere from 2 to 4 weeks for your body to adjust to the new weight lifting routine.Generally, for compound movements 
such as squats or barbell bent rows,  you want to make sure you are completely recovered before attempting the next set. 

     How long should I rest between workouts 

     I can’t  overstate the importance of getting quality rest between your weight lifting  routines. It is vitally important that you get the 
proper amount of rest in  order to allow your body to grow. 

     The amount of rest necessary will depend on your age, genetics, and current state of health.If you are a beginner, you generally need 
anywhere from two to three days rest. 

     Depending on  your intensity levels, you may need more. Just remember that your body should  never be sore before you go into a 
workout. If your body is sore, take another  day off. Your goal is to go into a workout feeling good, strong, and energized. 

     Training  time
     How much time  should you spend weight lifting? This will depend on your goals and weight  lifting routine. Beginners should spend 
anywhere from 20 minutes to 45 minutes  in the gym. Intermediate and advanced trainers should spend anywhere from 30  minutes to 
60 minutes training. 

     There is no  hard and fast rule as to how much time you spend training. The important point  to remember is deciding how much time 
is needed to get the job done. Remember  to cut the chit chat and focus completely on the weight lifting routine and  exercises. 

     Stretching is very important.I recommend that you get into the habit of stretching once or  twice a day, before, during and after your 
weight lifting sessions and on non training days.Stretching improves flexibility and if the muscles become tight and inflexible, blood flow 
is impaired, thus reducing muscle contraction. 

     When  stretching, make sure that you start slowly and hold for 5 to 15 seconds while  maintaining good breathing. Do not force 
yourself into stretching positions. It  will take some time for you to develop good stretching techniques so be  patient.
     Be sure to  include stretching in your weight lifting routine. 

    Warming  up and cooling down
     Try and get  into the habit of warming up before your weight lifting sessions.
     Warming up can  consist of an aerobic activity such as riding the stationary bike, stair climber, elliptical trainer, or any other multitude 
of aerobic activities.
     Follow this up  with a period of stretching. I usually ride the stationary bike for about 5 to  10 minutes before all workouts.This gets 
my body warmed up and helps with the knee joints before a heavy leg day.Always include warm up exercises in your weight lifting routine.
     It is very important that you breath correctly when doing your weight lifting exercises.Keep these basic rules of breathing in mind when 
performing your weight lifting  exercises: 

     1) Never hold  your breath during the repetition
     2) Breath in  when your muscles are elongating and breath out when they are contracting 

     3) Try and keep  your mouth open while performing your weight lifting exercises. By breathing  through your mouth you equalize the 
pressure in your chest. 

    Aerobic training
     Aerobic  training is very important and I strongly suggest you include aerobic training  in your weight lifting routine. 

     Aerobic  training can be any type of exercise that causes your heart rate to increase  and makes you breath harder than normal. 
Don’t worry, your not going to have to  join any “aerobics” classes to benefit from aerobic exercise.
     Aerobic  training is a very useful tool in fat burning. The body has two sources of  energy; sugar and fat. Sugar or glycogen is stored 
in the liver and muscle and  is the easiest from of energy for your body to use.Glycogen is the bodies  preferred source of energy.Fat on 
the other hand, requires more work to be  used as energy.
     Why? The  problem is that fat can be broken down only as long as oxygen is available.Oxygen must be present for your body to burn 
fat for energy, but not to burn  glycogen. In the initial stages of exercise, oxygen is not yet available.
     It can take  anywhere from 20 to 35 minutes of constant exercise before fat is fully available to the muscles as fuel.Depending on your 
current conditioning will  determine how efficiently your body burns fat.Exercise,  particularly aerobics, enhances the development of 
capillaries to the muscle which in turn improves the blood flow where it’s needed.With better blood flow and improved oxygen uptake by 
the muscles, your body becomes better adapted at  building muscle. 

     This is the  number one reason why you shouldn’t neglect the aerobic part of your training.
     I recommend  that your aerobics sessions be at least 15 to 20 minutes in length. Although  beginners will want to take it easy when 
first starting aerobic training.
     Beginners will  want to start off doing 5 to 10 minutes of aerobic training and increase the  amount of “work” time when it feels 
comfortable to do so.When doing  aerobics training, shoot for training in your target heart range.
     In order to  find this range, take the number 220 and subtract your age in years(for  example, if your 32, it would be 220 - 32 = 188), 
then take that number and  keep your heart rate within 60 to 80 percent of it (for example, take 188 x 60%  = 113 beats per minute). 

     Try and stick  to this range while you train.Make sure that you record these numbers in your training log.Remember the  above noted 
points while you are putting your weight lifting routine together  and you should be fine. 


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