Muscular strength is the highest amount of effort exerted by the muscles of the body in order to overcome the most resistance in a single effort. How to develop muscular strength and why do I need to be strong are two of the most common questions in fitness .
How to build Muscular Strength for general fitness
Every move you make requires muscle strength, so building muscular strength at the very basic level involves moving those muscles. Modern sedentary lifestyles are the antithesis of building a strong, healthy, fit body. For those with little interest in powerlifting, bodybuilding or competitive sport and just want to build enough strength to stay fit, healthy there are many options to choose from but they all require some effort to be put into training.
Resistance training is used to increases muscle strength by making your muscles work against a weight or force. That resistance cone come in many forms including bodyweight training, free weights, weight machines or resistance bands which are often used by physiotherapist to rehabilitate muscular injuries.
How often should I do resistance training ?
Regardless of the type of resistance training chosen a beginner needs to train two – three times per week to gain the most benefit from their training while also allowing enough time between training sessions for recovery. Each muscle group should have 48 hours between training sessions to maximise recovery and strength gains. Over training will not only lead to injuries but the fatigued muscles will stagnate and you will not achieve your goals.
How much weight should I be lifting ?
This is one of the most common questions I see asked in on-line forums or asked by regular members of the public. It does not matter if you are in my local area of Gympie or a person from around the world, the answer is that it depends on your goals, but for a beginner just wanting to get fit, for each exercise you need to choose a weight that is just heavy enough to make the last repetition of each set difficult. For example of you are choosing to do Squats and you want to develop your fitness level by doing sets of 10 then you need to choose a weight where you can only just complete 10 rep, if you can do 11 reps you need to lift more weight but if you cannot lift 10 reps then you need to choose a lighter weight.
When using bodyweight exercises, when an exercise becomes to easy then the exercise needs to be changed to a more difficult version, or if the exercise is to hard, an easier variant. For example Push-ups are a popular bodyweight strength exercise, but not everybody can do push-ups when they first begin, so to make the exercise easier the push-ups can be done against a wall, with hands placed on a step or with your knees on the ground instead of your feet. To make push-ups harder then you can place your feet up on a step or box, the higher your feet the harder the push-up.
In my next post I will look at why muscular strength is important for good health.