So you’ve decided that you want to pump it, but you’re not sure how to do it right. All you know is that you want it swollen and you like the idea of bulging veins. Well you’ve come to the right place! We have some tips for how to make sure you pump iron effectively. Yes, iron! We’re talking about weight lifting!
There are a variety of methods that body builders’ use to bulk up. We can talk about those later. First, let’s set up a great foundation. There are really only two things that you need to consider.
First, pay attention to the amount of weight you are lifting. Writing down the amount of weight your body can handle for each muscle group is critical. If you don’t write it down, how will you remember where you left off and if you are improving? Invest is a cheap marble journal and write down (at a minimum) your major body parts: Chest, Legs, Biceps, Triceps, Shoulders, etc. Write down your max weight for each.
Second, understand the importance of repetitions and sets. Studies vary on how many, but most suggest you aim for 15 repetitions and 4 sets. Your goal is to be able to accomplish 15 repetitions with superior form during each set. This means that your muscles should be able to manage the weight you identified in step 1 for each group. Once you are able to master 15 repetitions in each of your sets, it’s time to increase weight.
The trick to increasing your strength is to add weight gradually and reassess your ability to complete the repetitions. It’s normal to not be able to complete all 15 repetitions with your new weight, but don’t let yourself drop below 12. Otherwise, you need to reduce the weight. Remember, repetitions don’t count if you do them in poor form, so be honest and be safe. You should stay at your new weight until you are able to master 15 repetitions again. Write it down in your little journal. Then, add more weight.
There you go, a vicious and killer cycle of pumping iron. Now go to the gym and get all hot, sweaty, and swollen. It’s a good look.
Born and raised in Richmond, VA, Stanley works as an IT professional and a Group X fitness instructor. He enjoys helping others achieve their fitness goals through his spin and other high energy classes. Read his personal blog here and follow him on Twitter. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.