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How Heavy Should You Lift to Get Big (HOW MUCH WEIGHT!)

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What’s up guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.COM. You may not recognize me, I got the T-shirt on, number one and it’s the red one. Never broke out the red one before that’s because this is our new AX 247365 days a year. And I think this is a very important point here guys, very simple but important in that, I try to preach to you all the time when you’re trying to get bigger, faster, stronger and look better, you better have a long term committment in mind. There’s no short cuts, no bullshit like that guys, if you want to get bigger, faster, stronger you’ve got to be ready to put in the effort to do that.

And there’s a big question that comes up revolving around the concept of getting stronger and that is, How Heavy Should I Lift if I’m trying to get bigger and better and stronger and be better than I am yesterday? Well there’s a very important answer to this. It’s not just to lift as heavy as you can. Now don’t get me wrong here, I’m a big proponant of throwing around as much weight as you can. However it better be with your posture in mind. If you can’t control your posture under load then you’re not really training with a purpose.

If you’re going to train to be a better Athlete, if you’re going to train to look like a better Athlete, if you want to just function safely and healthfully, then you better have a command of your posture under load. Once you have command, then load that sucker up and put as much as you can handle on it. That’s the way you’re going to be challenged. But I wanted to underscore this by taking you through a few exercises. Ok, first of all to declare, my knees, Shit! We all know that if you’ve been following my program here for a while, or my channel. You realize that I have some pretty difficult and challenging Knees, but it doesn’t mean that I can’t train or train heavy, I have to make some accomondations. What I start with is a Deadlift. A Deadlift for me is very comfortable. And there’s a big reason why the Deadlift is more comfortable for me versus a Squat. With my particular knee condition, it is much easier for me to keep a vertical shin when I go down into a descent.

So if I’m going to go down into a Deadlift you can see that the angle of the shin is much more vertical as it is in a Squat. The bottom of the Squat my shins will go much more forward, a lot more stress on the anterior portion of my Knee. Another reason why I love Bulgarian Split Squats, it allows me to jump my leg out and then get that vertical shin away from my body and still load up my Quads.

But as far as the Deadlift goes here, you can watch as I go up in weight here. Starting off at 135, you know I can control this. This is obviously very light, very easy. I’m in total command of my form. My low back is arched, my shoulders are back, my shoulder blades are pinned down, everything is nice and tight. I can do this. I add on a couple 45’s. I move on up. Same thing, I’m in control of this weight. I can do this. I’m allowed to do this. It’s recommended for me to do this. It’s actually recommended for me to do more. So I do. I throw more weight on the bar. And here again as we creep our way all the way up, 315 now. Again I can handle this. I haven’t had a breakdown in form. My back hasn’t started to round, either upper or lower back. Right, I’m not lunging forward here. The bar is not traveling far away from my body.

Everything is good, I can proceed. If this is you, and you’re in this position here, keep going. Don’t get comfortable and stay here. That’s a mistake. If you can handle more with proper posture, then load, load up at all opportunities. So now I do load, I go a little heavier now. Now we’re touching just shy of, I’ve got these weird little 44 pound plates. But I get them up there, I start creeping towards 400. I start to have some issues here. I start to feel as if maybe the back isn’t staying in exactly the position that I want it to. But I still feel that if I was going to grade myself on whether I had command or whether I didn’t? I would give myself a pass here and I would continue.

Now as we get up here touching sort of almost 500 pounds. This is where I feel like, I’m just not, I’m not mastering it the way I should. I don’t feel comfortable doing this weight. This weight’s not benefiting me necessarily. Because with compensations throughout my kenetic chain, I may not get hurt on this rep. Thank God, I would have got right in front of you guys here.

But I may get hurt down the road and that’s the point. Don’t just lift heavy for the sake of Ego! Lift heavy if you can control it. I don’t feel like I’m controlling it that well here. But I’m to going to workout, I’m going to back off a little bit and workout in that range, somewhere between the last one I used and this weight. And command it and then progressively work my up from there with the goal being to command that weight. Take a look at my Squat now, now here we’re going to go towards more of my weak side. As I said, my knees really make Squatting difficult. Especially because of the positioning of the knees and that acute angle that happens on the Tibia and the Shins as they move forward to the Squat that I don’t have to deal with necessarily on the Deadlift. The pain that I encounter on the Squat is much more than what I encounter on a Deadlift. So would I even Squat? Well, I don’t abandon it entirely. I said, the Bulgarian Split Squat is an awesome exercise for me.

I can get my legs actually complete vertical as I go on, if I hop far enough out. So for me, I have alternatives. If you’re dealing with pain and discomfort that make your Squat more difficult for you or more painful, ditch it. It doesn’t mean that you’re going to lose all your leg gains. There’s other ways, there’s other variations of the Squat that you can do to still maximize your leg strength.

We go and we add another pair of 45 pound plates, now up to 225. Again it’s passable, but I can already again, my trained eye, I’m looking at me, I can already see some breakdowns. I see that I’m lunging forward a little bit as I go down. I see that my knees are kind of caving in. I see a little bit of augoss at the bottom. Again I’m trying to figure out ways to get around my discomfort as I get down lower and Squat.

I can’t even go down as low even just with 225. I’m just not happy with this. First of all, if it looks ugly, you’re right, but I can tell you it feels even uglier inside. So it’s just not the right exercise and the weight for me. If I wanted to do the Squats, I could them by backing off a lot on the weight, but then again how productive is that if I’ve got exercises I can do a lot heavier with good form. So again there’s just a little bit of a sneak peak behind the training scenes here as I show you that the most important thing that you need to consider when it comes to the question of How Much Should you Lift? Is how much can you lift under control. How much can you lift without your posture breaking down. This is going to be my answer to you. If you can lift a lot of weight with your posture not breaking down, then great. If you can lift more than what you are right now without your posture breaking down, then shame on you.

Put more weight on that bar and command the limits that you have. And when you find your limits, back off a little bit, and command the limits that you can control and increase your weights from there. Try to keep pushing yourself up and up. Really try to work on maintaining your posture under load at all times. Guys I hope you found this video helpful. In the meantime, if you’re looking for a program that tells you and shows you how to do this the right way, puts the science back in strength. Allows me as a physical therapist to kind of harp on you when I need to, to make sure that you aren’t screwing these things up because believe me, I’ve felt it myself and I know what happens when you start to hurt under the bar. It causes a lot of things to go wrong, you don’t train as hard, you don’t get the results you want to see.

We don’t have to have that happen. Follow my program at ATHLEANX.COM and I’ll show you how to make those progressive gains without letting the pain get in the way. Alright guys, I’ll be back here in just a couple days. Meantime let me know what you want to see and I willl do my best to bring it to you in the days and weeks ahead. See Ya!!.

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