If there`s one exercise that you definitely want to be doing when going about a new fitness plan, weight training is it.
Weight training is going to entirely reshape your body, improve your strength level, and foster a higher overall metabolic rate so that you`re burning up calories much faster all day long. This then means it`s not only easier to reach your weight loss goals at the moment (if you`re looking to lose weight), but also means that it`ll be that much easier to keep the weight off over the long term as well.
Fortunately many people don`t fully understand what weight lifting is all about, so skip over it entirely. Let`s give you the basics right now so that you can be sure you don`t make the same mistake.
Why Weight Train?
First it`s important to understand all of the benefits that weight training will bring. These include:
- Improved muscle strength level
- Decreased risk of osteoporosis
- Enhanced metabolic rate
- Improved body composition
- Decreased resting heart rate
- Lowered stress level
- Improved body image
- Enhanced insulin sensitivity
- Greater body weight control
- Increased muscle tone and definition
- Reduced risk of injuries
As you can see, the benefits are quite numerous. Weight training will work the entire body just as much as any other activity and is one of the best forms of exercise to help prevent the muscle mass and strength loss that naturally occurs due to aging.
Factors To Consider When Designing A Program
When going about designing a weight training workout program, there are a few different factors to consider.
First you want to think about the body part split that you`re going to be using. This includes a full body approach, an upper/lower split approach, or a body part split. For most people, the full body or upper/lower approach tends to work best as it`ll allow you to hit each muscle group at least twice per week, which is the minimum recommended for good progress.
Next, you also want to consider how many reps and sets you should be performing. Aim for around 10-12 reps when working on building muscle endurance and definition and 5-10 reps when focused on muscle strength.
Note that the higher your rep range, the lower the weight you`ll lift.
For sets, you should aim for around 2-5 sets per workout, depending on how many exercises total you hope to perform. Your total sets per workout should be around 25-30 maximally, so work backwards to figure out your sets per exercise.
Finally, aim for 30-120 seconds of rest between sets. Those looking to build muscle should aim for the longer rest length of that recommendation while those looking to burn fat should aim for the lower rest length interval.
How Often To Weight Train
Finally, once you have your program built, you`ll want to think about how often to perform it. As stated, work each muscle no less than twice per week.
If you`re doing an upper/lower split, this will work perfectly as you`ll perform an upper workout, a lower workout, take a day of rest and then repeat the cycle before resting for the weekend.
If you`re using a full body workout, then you`ll perform it one day, take one or two days off and then perform it once again.
Always make sure any give muscle has at least one full day off between sessions for recovery.
If you structure your weight lifting program properly, you will be very well rewarded with the results that you see. If you`re aiming to burn fat while doing these workouts, also consider a fat burning supplement such as Phen375, which will help to increase your metabolic rate even further.