Move More: By Strengthening
Move More Month…Week 2! This week we focus on our favorite injury prevention topic…strengthening. If there is one thing we cannot get enough of, it is strengthening! Our manta is like a broken record #strongisneverwrong.
Here’s the thing though, our resilience to breakdown of tissues (i.e. INJURY) is through the ability to tolerate load on the body. The only way to increase the load we can take on is to STRENGTHEN.
What exactly happens when we strengthen? To put it simply, our muscle cells increase in size and are literally stronger to forces against them. Strangely enough, we need to overwhelm the system (fatigue it) to signal it to build. This seems strange-intentionally try to overload the system so it gets stronger? Yep! However, overload too much and we break. Overload enough and under the right provisions and voila, bigger, stronger muscle.
What are the keys to strength: It is simply exercising your muscles to fatigue.
Do you need a specific amount of reps or sets: Nope. In fact, you can get stronger just by simply doing as many reps as you can until you fatigue. The ideal rep amount is 12-15.
But can you complicate it if you have higher level goals such as competing in a body building competition: Yes, most certainly, and if that is your life goal, you go for it! You will probably need a better plan than simply doing as many reps until you fatigue, but that planning is beyond the context of this current article.
Putting it all together:
Choose a weight that will tire you out at 12-15 reps. If you want to, repeat it a few times. Then remember to give your body appropriate rest, so wait 1-3 days to repeat that again. You will start feeling stronger in a couple of weeks, but it actually takes at least 8 weeks to see true changes to the size of the tissue.