Get strong as an Ox!


 Sample Image If you have been lifting weights for awhile then you have probably realized that there is a great correlation between getting stronger and getting bigger. Just take a glance at weightlifters, powerlifters, and strongmen to see some convincing examples of this phenomenon.


This leads us to the obvious conclusion that even if our only goal is to look better we need to get stronger to do that. So if you have been following a traditional bodybuilding program for awhile it may be time to switch to a more strength-oriented training plan.

The basic tenets of designing a program to gain strength are as follows:

Lower reps

Low reps allow for heavy weights, and heavy weights are what builds strength fast. You want to stay below 6 reps here. 1-3 reps is the pure strength zone, while 4-6 reps will allow you to gain some mass with your strength.

Higher sets

To make up for the relatively lower volume of your low rep sets, it is necessary to increase the number of sets you do. There is no special number. Anywhere from 5-12 sets of an exercise is the norm. The exact number will depend on the number of reps you're doing, your goals, and your current work capacity.

Long rest periods

In contrast to bodybuilding, we want to avoid being tired as much as possible when training for pure strength. This means we want close to complete recovery between sets. The exact amount of time will depend on the exercise, but anywhere from 3-6 minutes is typical. Some powerlifters are known to take up to 15 minutes between heavy squats or deadlifts!

Higher frequency

The more often you do something the better you get at it. For professional strength athletes it is common to train 6 days per week, 2-3 sessions per day! While this isn't practical for most of us, it gives us a hint as to how to increase strength quickly. The more often you can train (without sacrificing recovery) the better.

These are just a few guidelines to help you to get stronger. The key to fast strength and muscle gains is hard work combined with professionally designed training programs and sound diet and supplement plans.


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