There are so many things we can do for exercise. Sometimes we shy away from heavy resistance training because we associate it with injury. While it is true that injury can happen in any form of exercise, lifting heavy can be done safely and has immense benefits.
The term ‘heavy’ is a relative one that means different things for different people. In the context of this article, lifting heavy means using a resistance that challenges your body and mind. This might involve a barbell, dumbbell, resistance band, kettlebell, sandbag, your own bodyweight, or some other implement.
Let’s dive into what makes ‘lifting heavy’ so effective.
Getting stronger isn’t just for powerlifters. As a human, you will encounter physical struggle at some point in your life. Being strong is important for completing your daily tasks, recreational activities, and survival.
When training for strength, lifters typically use varying set and rep schemes with relatively heavy weights. This strengthens the muscles, connective tissues, and causes adaptation in your central nervous system. When done properly, there are numerous benefits of lifting heavy that can be found throughout the body.
Longevity isn’t necessarily the first thing on your mind as you’re deadlifting, but maintaining strength in your posterior chain is essential to living a long, healthy life. As we age, we typically lose strength – which is why it is important to engage our muscles and keep them from weakening over time.
Strength is directly correlated with living longer. The University of Michigan found that individuals with low muscle strength were 50% more likely to die earlier than their stronger peers. You can truly improve your overall quality of life and extend your lifespan by using resistance training to strengthen your body.
Become More Resilient
Resiliency can be measured in many ways. However, I truly believe that lifting heavier weights can strengthen your body, mind, and spirit. Subjecting yourself to extreme physical struggle in a safe, controlled environment is a way to prepare for battle outside of the gym. There may be a time in your life when you need to defend yourself or your family. Perhaps, you will need to push your vehicle when it breaks down (I did the other day when my car wouldn’t start in the middle of the Costco Gas Station). Be prepared and train yourself to be resilient by lifting heavy things.
Lifting heavy can be done in so many ways. There is no right or wrong way to challenge your body as long as it is safe and intentional. I think some people are afraid that if they lift heavy, they will turn into a meathead. I think that couldn’t be further from the truth. Using heavier resistance can challenge you to your core and I highly recommend it.
What other benefits do you find from lifting heavy? Let us know in a comment below and until next time.. Stay moving!