Hitting the gym hard every week with no significant gain to show for your efforts can be demotivating. The problem can be attributed to the failure to adhere to the progressive-resistance training system.
What is Progressive Resistance Training?
Building and toning the muscles and tissues is not easy; it requires you to push your body to its limits. Progressive resistance training is designed to help you improve on your lifts in some ways when you heat the gym. Adding weights as you jump from one level to the next is the basic technique of progression training.
The goal is to push the muscles to the limit, to have them undergo increased stress so that this triggers growth. If you keep to the same weight every time, then the muscles will acclimate to it and stop growing. The objective of progress training is to make you progress in your weight lifting workout so that you increase your physique.
Seeing bodybuilders and weightlifters push weights that are at times twice or triple their bodyweight can have you wondering how they achieve such a fit. Some people believe that is has something to do with genetics; that such individuals are born with some unusual strength and physique. However, the secret to their power is simple training techniques that see them start with light weights as the progress to the heavier ones – progressive resistance training.
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Methods of Progressive Resistance Training
Increasing the weight of the bar every time you lift or push the weights is the most effective way of achieving the progress you desire. An increment of 2lbs a week may seem small, but it will have a huge impact. For some people, the desire to progress will see them adding weight only to reach a point where they cannot do any more no matter how hard they try. If you find yourself at that point- the plateau – you still have some options that can help you to keep progressing.
- Increase the weight – This should be an obvious thing; however, the much you will add is subject to the mass strength and mass you want to gain.
- Adding repetitions – Training in sets of a certain number of reps for a week and then adding one rep with each week is also a form of progressive resistance training.
- Adding sets – When benching, consider increasing the set instead of the weight. For instance, you can jump from doing a set of 4 x 6-10 to 5 x 6-10.
- Increasing intensity– It is all about the time between doing sets and resting between sets. By reducing the resting time and increasing the intensity, you will be doing progressive training.
- Time under tension – For instance, you can work your bicep curls doing a second up and two down. To increase the time under tension, you will do a second up and increase the down motion by a second to 3 secs; this works the biceps for longer.
By increasing the repetitions and sets as well as the intensity and time under tension, your muscles will be well exhausted even before you think of adding weight to the bar.
Read our guides for specific body parts to add more muscles and improve vascularity:
Never assume that your body will understand that you want it to get bigger and look leaner; it will only respond to the messages you send its way. In essence, that means that you will have to force it, to work your muscles harder a little bit more every time you hit the gym. Eventually, the body will get the message, and the muscles will be able to handle the exercise the next time you hit the gym.