Weights: High-Resistance or Low-Resistance, and What They Do for Your Muscles

Weights: High-Resistance or Low-Resistance, and What They Do for Your Muscles

It is a pretty well-held belief that people who want to build bulk and muscle lift huge amounts of weight for short periods of time, and those who want to tone and lose weight lift small amounts of weight for longer periods of time. But is it true?

Walk into almost any gym and you will see two types of people in the weight area--those who are lifting huge amounts of weight and shaking after 5 lifts and those who have small amounts of weight that they seem to lift forever. So which is better for you? Is it true that lifting very heavy weights a small number of times will build more muscle than lifting small amounts of weight a large number of times?

The basic makeup of any weight lifting regime is the amount of weight you lift times the number of times that you lift it. In gym lingo, each time you lift a weight is called a rep (short for repetition). Each group of reps is called a set. So, if you are lifting 3 sets of 12 reps, you would lift a given weight 12 times, rest, lift it 12 times again, rest, and then lift it a final 12 times.

“In weight-lifting lingo, the number of times that you lift your weight without taking a break is the number of reps. Most weight-lifters take a break after they have finished their reps and then they repeat the process. Each group of reps that you lift is called a set.”

In high-resistance weight lifting, the goal is to max out your muscle capacity as quickly as possible. So, you would pick a weight that was so heavy that you could only do between 5 and 7 reps in a set. It is widely thought that this is the way to build muscle. Often, women will shy away from this type of lifting because they fear that it will make them bulky.

In low-resistance weight lifting, the goal is to max out your muscles after more than 15 reps. So, you would pick a weight that was light enough that you could do between 15 and 20 reps in a set. Many women prefer to lift this way because they think that it will help them tone their muscles and not build bulk.

So what is the best way to lift? Does high-resistance training make you build bulk? Does low-resistance help you tone? It turns out that both of these common myths are just not true and the ideal workout is made of high-, low-, and mid-resistance training.

High-resistance training, at its core, is about getting stronger. All forms of weight lifting will help you get stronger over time but the fastest way to get stronger is high-resistance training. Maybe you are asking yourself, “but will I get bulky?” The short answer to that question is, no. No you will not. Huge, bulky muscles are largely a result of genetics and diet combined with intense, high-resistance training.

Low-resistance training is a great way to build endurance and lose fat. Low-resistance training is also great because it can be combined with cardio work and you can keep your heart-rate up, while you lift weights.

If your main goal at the gym is to get stronger, then your weight-lifting schedule should have lots of high-resistance training with some mid- and low-resistance training to help you with your endurance and fat loss. If your main goal is to lose fat then, combined with a healthy eating plan, your weight-lifting schedule should be heavier on low-resistance training, but do not forget to do high-resistance training as well. In a study by the University of Alabama they found those dieters who did high-resistance training lost as much weight as dieters who just did cardio workouts and they lost more fat than the cardio crowd--that is right, high-resistance training was just as, if not more, effective than strapping on your running shoes and hitting the treadmill in helping people lose weight.

KURU Shoes Help Make Weight Lifting a Triple Threat

Weight-lifting is an important part of any healthy athletic plan. Lifting weights can help you:

  • Lose weight
  • Get stronger
  • Build muscle

The most important part of picking your weight lifting plan, in addition to your goals, is what type of weight lifting inspires you to actually get to the gym and get the work done. So put on your fitness shoes like your KURUs with their amazing KURUSOLE technology and get to the gym for a stronger and healthier you.