How much Weight should I lift?
I was asked this question during one of our workout classes, and to be honest it really is a great question. And I am sure you already know what our response is...it depends! Haha bet you didn’t see that coming. But it’s true, everyone is different. Everyone has different body types, certain limitations, that will determine how much one can lift. For example how much weight Coach Adam can deadlift will significantly be more weight than I can deadlift. That’s because Adam is naturally bigger and stronger than me. So a heavy weight for me, won’t be as heavy for him. This is important to keep in mind because you shouldn’t compare yourself to others in the gym. The only competition you have is with yourself!
Now back to weight selection. At first we always start light when learning new exercises or trying things for the first time. That’s because we want to make sure you feel comfortable getting the movements down, learning what muscles you are working and should be feeling. You never want to sacrifice good form on an exercise just to lift heavier weights. Form is everything! Once you gain that confidence and repetition on those exercises, then we should be looking to progress those exercises to lift a little heavier.
A lot of it comes down to feel, at least for me. Some days I’ll be feeling good and lifting heavier. While other days I just won't have it and will have to go lighter. But I am always looking to push myself. If it feels like you are just going through the motions and not really feeling the muscles working through the exercises, then you can most definitely lift heavier. It shouldn’t feel comfortable lifting weights, it should be difficult. That is how you are going to make your gains in the gym. Even if it is just a little bit at a time. Over the long run, you will improve and you will see the fruits of your labor.