Lifting weights can seriously change your body. But if you stick to the same weights week in and week out, your body probably won’t make the changes you’re looking for. It’s common behavior; we tend to adhere to routines and choose the familiar route. Picking up a heavier weight at the gym can be pretty scary, too.
Many of us are worried about getting too bulky or believe we’re incapable of lifting heavier weights. While we should err on the side of being safe, our muscles need to be constantly challenged! This is typically accomplished by choosing to pick up more weight in the gym.
So how do you know when it’s time to reach for the bigger dumbbell or try a heavier weight in your group exercise class? Are you ready to lift heavier? Here are a few easy signs to help you know when it’s the right time.
- Your form is on pointIf you’re feeling more comfortable and able to perform an exercise with full range of motion and excellent form, it’s probably safe to say that it’s time to pick up more weight! Quality should be stressed over quantity, so when you’re capable of performing with quality form, then it’s time to increase the intensity during your lifting session. This can be done by either manipulating the speed or tempo of your workouts or increasing the amount of weight lifted.
- You’ve hit a plateau: If you find that you aren’t making changes in your appearance despite the number of times you’re working throughout the week, it’s typically a time to switch things up; your body has undoubtedly plateaued. One of the best ways to break this plateau is to pick up more weight in the gym!
- You’re no longer feeling challenged: Failure is a good thing when it comes to lifting weights! If you find that you’re busting through entire sets and barely slowing down as you near the end of your desired repetitions, then you probably can attempt lifting a heavier weight. Always start slow when increasing the weight, and obviously never be afraid to decrease weight if you feel that your form starts to deteriorate.