Ever since I could remember my thought of the typical gym rat were these big muscular dude lifting as much as possible and I couldn’t believe the kind of stress those guys were putting on their body everyday, day in and day out. But what was it all for, to be top dog, to show everyone around how big your you know what is, maybe it was all just for the attention. Could it actually be for that self satisfaction you get knowing you have surpassed a new level of your physical capabilites? I had always wondered this when I was just starting out in the gym. All of that heavy weight had to take a toll on your joints at some point right? I mean you couldn’t possibly continue on that path without some kind of either joint or muscle damage, right?
My biggest fear with lifting heavy weight is that I lift too heavy and cause a serious spinal injury to myself YIKES! There has to be a way where I can acheive my optimal muscle growth while preserving both my joints and muscle tissue. That’s when I began to focus on not how much weight I can lift but how I lifted. Sure you can lift some heavy weight but if your entire body is stressing trying to assist whatever muscle you’re trying to focus on then you’re just doing more harm then good. I first practiced getting my form right making sure I was concentrating on the specific muscle group, going slow and feeling each rep out. Once I got my form just right then that’s when I began to increase the weight little by little never exceeding what I was physically capable of.
Not to say lifting heavy is a bad thing, its just that like most things it’s good in moderation. I felt whenever I began to plateau with my regular routine of course I would throw in some heavy days just to mix it up a bit just so my body wasn’t adapting to the same routine. Your body is a smart machine once it adjusts to a certain workout, lets say you’re doing the exact same workouts everyday there comes a point where you stop getting the benefits from the workout and all your time is wasted. I’d hate to know that all the work I put in at the gym would be meaningless.
All in all, to those of you just starting out before you go and snap some shit trying to be Superman take it slow and perfect your form making sure you’re isolating each muscle group independently and once you’ve got the form down increase the weight by small increments. Then once in awhile throw in some heavy lift days, not to the point of injury but to where you’re not sacrificing form for the added stress on your body. And soon enough you too will walk through the gym doors as top dog, strutting your stuff like its nobodies business.