Many people believe that lifting heavy weights will cause a person to bulk up. The title of this blog leads us to the conclusion that this is not a true statement! Now let’s explain why:
Training is a very dynamic modality. There are many factors that play a role in conditioning, muscle size and overall strength. In order to increase strength you need to gradually increase the amount of weight that is being used. This increase in weight does NOT mean that you are going to increase in body size. Increasing the weight allows you to continue to challenge the muscle at an appropriate level. Without using heavier weights you will not get stronger and see improvements.
The number of repetitions performed has a higher impact on the size and growth of a muscle than the amount of weight being lifted. Performing exercise at higher repetitions will cause the muscle to increase endurance and not change in size.
When attempting to increase the size of the muscle you want to train at low repetitions with significantly heavier weight than you can use for high repetitions. This short burst of heavy lifting is what causes the body to increase the size of the muscle. The term for increasing muscle size is hypertrophy! Hypertrophy happens from the neuromuscular adaptations that happen as a result of the lower repetitions.
It is important for a well-balanced body to make sure to train in many different ways. Having a variety of exercises performed at varying intensities is going to give you an overall higher level of fitness because your body can handle the different intensities of exercises. Incorporating heavy weights to increase strength is one of many aspects of a good training plan. Improving in all areas makes you more well-rounded and capable of handling the challenges that life can throw your way!