You’re Lifting Too Heavy
There is a condition that all of us guys suffer from when at the gym, it’s known as “ego lifting”.
You’ve probably heard of it before:
It’s when guys go to the gym with the intentions of having a good and productive workout. But as soon as they lie down on the bench or curl up the first dumbbell they start lifting heavier and heavier, until they reach to the point where the weight is too heavy for them to manage with proper form and range of motion rendering the whole exercise meaningless.
Some do it because they want to impress their peers.
Others do it because they believe that the heavier they lift the better the gains.
And third do it because it feels good – a sense of self-achievement if you will.
Whatever the case might be, lifting too heavy is never a good thing!
You’re incapable of maintaining proper form, your range of motion sucks because you’re trying to pump as many reps as you possibly can, your rep max is poor, and you’re training towards building strength, not muscle (yes those two things don’t always go hand-in-hand).
Not to mention the high risk of injury!
The rational thing to do is stop giving a damn about what other people think about your lifts.
Or, even better, stop believing that others actually give a damn about how heavy you lift compared to themselves.
To make matters even worse, lifting heavy primes your body to develop more in strength than in size. What that means is that you are not gaining muscle but rather strength.
Slow down and start controlling the weights in order to achieve that muscle-mind connectivity that everybody’s been talking about.
Try and aim for 8-12 reps per set, proper form, proper ROM, and proper rest – anywhere from 60-120 seconds between sets and 120-240 between exercises (depending on what your goals are and how heavy you’re lifting that specific set).
And for everybody who are ego-lifting:
Try and remember that you are not in competition with everybody in the gym, but rather with yourself.
Lifting too heavy can decrease your muscle growth. It can also increase the risk of injury. You are also priming your body for strength rather than muscle growth – the structure of your workout could be the reason why you are not seeing good results.