Building strength is an essential part of overall fitness and can improve your performance in numerous areas in workouts. While there are many different ways to build strength, some methods are more effective than others. In this blog, we will discuss three ways to help build your muscle strength.
- Progressive Overload
What is it? Progressive Overload is a training principle that involves gradually increasing the demands placed on the body while you lift. The concept is simple: as your body adapts to a particular level of stress, you need to increase the stress to continue making progress. This can be done by increasing the weight you lift, the number of reps you do, or the frequency of how often you lift. It is essential to building strength and making progress in your weightlifting journey. By consistently increasing the demands on your muscles, you force your body to adapt and get stronger!
- Accessory Work
One of the more underutilized tools in building strength is doing accessory work to complement the exercises you’re performing. One of my favorite accessory exercises to do when I squat is a banded good morning or a glute ham raise, because when we squat, we use all of those muscles. It’s so important to focus on even the smaller muscles and joints we use when we squat that we don’t always think about like our adductors (groin) and ankles. When doing bench press, it’s important to balance your body out by doing some sort of pulling motion as well such as ring rows, lat pulldowns, or pull-ups. Same things apply for when you focus on doing any kind of core strengthening. If you were to do 5×10 of AbMat sit-ups, be sure to hit the same rep scheme of some Supermans or GHD back extensions to strengthen your erectors along with your belly!
When it comes to building strength, consistency is key! You won’t see nearly the same amount of progress if you lifted once a week versus 3-4 times per week (which is the goal). Consistency allows the body to start to adapt to the new stimulus and recover efficiently, but if you were to only lift once a week, the gains would be much slower and may feel stagnant. Lifting multiple times a week also gives you the opportunity to only focus on one main lift per day (squat/bench/deadlift). When your body is overloaded with more than 1 big lift, it’s hard to capitalize on the gains.
To sum this all up, the top 3 ways that I recommend to build strength are progressive overload, accessory work, and consistency! When you put all 3 of those together, you’ll start hitting PR’s in no time 😊 Happy Lifting!!