Is weight lifting twice a week the secret to success? If you’re on a strength-training journey, you’re probably looking for the best way to lift to get the GR8EST results. It’s been said that weight training twice a week is the way to go– but is this myth or fact? It turns out the answer isn’t so simple.
Weight Lifting as a Beginner
If you’re starting, don’t be intimidated. With weight lifting, it truly is slow and steady that wins the race. Start with weights that you can lift easily ten to twelve times for two to three sets. Don’t compare yourself to the person next to you, and don’t try to lift more than is comfortable. You’re more likely to hurt yourself than you are to start building strength.
As a beginner, don’t try to start lifting every day. Your muscles need time to recover.
It’s recommended that you allow for 24 to 48 hours for your muscles to recover. This would mean that, yes, you are training at least two times a week, but possibly more. In the beginning, you don’t want to over-work muscles that aren’t used to the weight, so this recovery time is crucial. Another tip for beginners is to train just one area of the body per work out. For example, one day train for the upper body, the second-day legs, and the next core.
Weight Lifting for the Advanced
If you’ve been strength-training for a while, you’ve figured out your routine, and you’re looking to build maximum strength so that you may need a more focused lifting plan. A study was conducted examining the results of strength trainers who lifted twice a week, versus strength trainers who lifted three times a week.
Was there a difference? Was the twice-a-week rule golden? The study determined that yes, there was a difference, and no, the twice-a-week rule didn’t win. There was a significant difference between those who trained twice a week and those who trained three times a week.
The individuals who trained just twice a week only received 80% of the results compared to those who trained three times a week. The study took place over approximately four and a half months, giving the individuals plenty of time to develop a measurable level of strength.
So, What’s the Answer?
Essentially, the answer is that there is no answer (sorry GR8NESS readers). While experts generally agree that somewhere between two and three times a week is the best way to weight train, others still go a different path and see great results. It’s been shown that weight training four days a week can have a significant impact on strength too.
Ultimately, it comes down to what works best for you and your schedule.
The important thing is finding your sweet spot, where you’re lifting enough to see the changes that you want, but not enough to hurt yourself. Make a goal and start working towards it, and don’t be discouraged if you don’t see the results you’re expecting overnight.
If you’re looking to develop a strength-training plan that’s customized for your needs, you can meet with a personal trainer who will recommend the best routine for you. Remember, every body is different, and what’s right for others may not be what’s right for you.