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Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Are you lifting enough?

I just had a PT session over at F/F1rst. It occurred to me that some lovely ladies may not be lifting heavy enough weights.

With a new trainer and different exercises it is hard to know what weight to start at. So PT puts a barbell in my hands and I pump out 10 reps. The last couple start to burn a little but this is not what I want. We go for the next heaviest weight. This time 1-5 are OK but I am starting to have to work hard for 6 and 7. 8 and 9 take everything I've got and before I do number 10 I have to have a brief pause and a few deep breaths. Sometimes I make it number 10 on my own, sometimes Mr PT has to help.

I rest for 60 seconds and then go again, telling myself that the weight is light, my muscles are fully recovered (apparently they regenerate some chemical after a minute or so) and that the first 5 are easy. If I can't get all the way to 10 then that's OK too. I am doing it right.

I do not choose a weight that I know I can lift for 3 sets of 10. I choose a weight that I know I can lift for 1 set of 10 if I work hard. I am not "saving" myself for anything after all. It would be like going easy in RPM so that I can smash out track 7 - what is the point of that (smash yourself on 3, 5 and 7 and recover in between)?

There should be effort, sweat and heat in your muscles. There should be grunting and face pulling. If there isn't, you're not lifting heavy enough.

4 comments:

  1. Face-pulling, yeah!!

    Clients sometimes ask me how I know if they're working hard enough. My answer is always that when they start pulling the ugly face, I know they're working hard.

    I like to train myself ugly. :o)

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  2. Okay, I'm delurking for the first time ever.

    I must have been lifting heavy enough today because I was grunting and puffing AND pulling those faces.

    I don't feel quite so stupid now!

    LJ

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  3. hi katie!
    just wanted to say a formal hello im jewel and one of those lurkers u r inspirational my blog is http://metamorphosis2008-jeweljasmine.blogspot.com/

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  4. Anonymous12:51 pm

    I agree so much!! I'm in a small group of 5 that trains together with our personal trainer. I can see that I am lifting much more weight than they are...sometimes twice the weight. This is supposed to be an advanced training group yet I'm the only one that is REALLY taking it up a notch and banging out far less reps than the others for obvious reasons. I leave there a soaking dripping mess. The others look as fresh as when they came in. What's up with that?

    CJ

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