How To Develop Muscle Strength And Endurance
As a fitness professional, I spend a lot of time in the gym and all too often I see people who spend a lot of time developing their physical fitness - but the results are lacking. This article is about how to get the most out of each workout.
A classic example (which makes me confused) is a person who comes to the gym six times a week, trains for almost two hours and does the same exercises each time using exactly the same weights and repetitions for months and months… and teaches others. His body, of course, does not change.
If you want to not only spend time in the gym, but also improve your physical appearance - you have to challenge yourself. Skeletal muscles grows bigger and gets stronger in response to load, so you have to make more and more demands on what you do every time. If you do not gradually overload the muscles, forcing them to do more than they are used to - they have no reason to develop.
The human body does not change unless you force it to change - so you should never be satisfied with what you have achieved. As soon as you stay in the comfort zone and training will no longer challenge your body - your progress will stop.
What is progressive overload?
This principle is successful strength training basically (also called resistance training). The basic idea is that increasing muscle size, strength and endurance requires a constant increase in load. Simply put, if you want to get stronger, you have to constantly make your muscles work harder than they are used to. This usually means increasing the resistance, but there are other ways to increase the overload.
The principle of progressive overload is not just about lifting weights to speed up muscle growth and increase muscle strength - it can also be used cardiovascular training, causing physiological changes affecting aerobic metabolism and the cardiovascular system.
Generally, weight or intensity gain is recommended in the range of 5 to 10% each week, depending on your fitness level. The increase in load should allow the body to adapt gradually, but it should not be too high so as not to create an additional risk of injury.
Load increasing methods
The easiest way to increase your workload is to increase your weight. If you perform an exercise using, for example, 20 kg weights and you can perform it more than 10 - 15 times in a row - increase the work weight by 1 - 2 kg. If you can still do the exercise without much effort - add another 1-2 kg and until 11 or 16 times you can no longer perform this exercise.
Remember that there is an inverse relationship between load and repetitions, so increasing the weight of the work will reduce the number of repetitions. This is good, because soon you will be stronger and will be able to do the exercise with less effort - this is the time when the weight of the work needs to be increased again.
Increasing the number of iterations
If you want to increase your muscle endurance, you can increase the load simply by doing more repetitions. In this case, try to perform the exercise until you can no longer perform it or perform it correctly.
It is believed that performing 8 - 15 repetitions (so that you can no longer perform the exercise 9 or 16 times) stimulates muscle growth, but performing more repetitions - muscle endurance. However, you cannot increase the number of repetitions indefinitely - so it is advisable to combine it with other ways to increase the load.
Increasing the amount of training
Volume means an increase in the total load of a workout by performing more moves (sets) or adding additional exercises. For example - if you train your back on Tuesdays, you add extra exercises to your back or extra exercises for another muscle group.
Diversification of exercises also helps to increase muscle load. Training each muscle group can be done using many different exercises, and each of them loads this muscle group in a slightly different way. If the day after training, you no longer "feel" your muscles, try other exercises with the same weight and appreciate the difference in feelings.
Increasing the frequency of training
You can also increase the load by increasing the frequency of your workouts. This method is good for starting a workout. However, try not to overdo it - optimally if you train 3 to 5 times a week. More frequent workouts will not give better results because the muscles need time to recover. For this reason, it is also recommended to employ one and not all muscle groups during one workout, for example: Monday - legs, Wednesday - back, Friday - shoulders and arms.
Reduction of rest time between sets (sets)
You can also increase the load by reducing the rest interval between walks - the amount of training remains the same, but you do it in a shorter time and the training is generally more intense. Such high-intensity workouts are not suitable for beginners, because if the anaerobic metabolism (glucose and glycogen is converted to energy without the use of oxygen) is "slow" you will simply get tired quickly and will not be able to complete the workout.
How to make the most of advanced congestion for your benefit
You can use any of these methods in your training, but to get the most out of them, you must first define exactly what you want to achieve.
If you are interested in building muscle, try to increase the load by increasing the weight of the work and keeping the number of repetitions between 8 and 12, which is optimal if the goal is muscle hypertrophy (increasing muscle size).
If you want to focus on strength, increasing your resistance (work weight) and training may be the best choice.
If you want to increase muscle endurance, it will be more appropriate to increase the number of repetitions and training intensity.
Remember about diet - around 70% results depend on exactly what and when you eat. Read more about pre- and post-workout nutrition HERE.
As the load increases, your body will try to adapt to it - as a result, your body will change - your muscles will become bigger or more embossed, their strength and endurance will increase. Set yourself more and more ambitious goals, try to achieve them and your progress will be seen both in the mirror and as an influx of energy and well-being.