One thing every guy wants to be is strong. It’s a status symbol to be the big guy in the gym. In the first year of training you will gain strength and size in a much greater capacity than you ever will in the entirety of your life as a lifter. Why is this? The first time you start lifting it puts a whole new stress on the body that it’s not used to. This means your body will eventually adapt to training until you reach what is known as a plateau. So, what can you do to help avoid this? Here are 5 ways you can keep from stalling and keep getting stronger.
One of the easiest and probably the most neglected technique to getting stronger is doing the things you suck at. You see it in the gym all the time people say they struggle with a certain lift and so they avoid it. This is a huge mistake. If you’re struggling with a certain lift and you never try to improve it you’ll miss out on a number of benefits, working on your weak lifts will also help to improve other lifts.
This goes along with doing what you suck at. In the big three lifts squat, bench, and the deadlift, there is always a part that you struggle with. For some it’s the lock out or just the lift off. By finding the part that is making you struggle with each lift you can help yourself increase your overall strength in the big three. For example, on the deadlift if you have trouble getting off the floor, adding in a deficit deadlift will be very beneficial to tackling that weak point.
With any workout plan worth its merit structure is key. If you have no structure to your program you are in no way setting yourself up to succeed, you must know the direction you are going and have a plan. Structure makes sure that you are getting adequate recovery but also gives you the opportunity to add in those weak points that you need to hit.
As we get older we tend to move away from the big three lifts. The fact is the big three provide a great hormonal response in the body when doing heavy sets in the 85% of your one rep max. By hitting the big three you can lift more weight, stimulate more muscle to grow, increase firing rate of muscles, increase testosterone and growth hormone. Another added benefit is increasing both of these hormones also helps you cut some extra body fat as well.
When you are running on a very intensely structured program you need to take time off. Most power lifters really only lift about 4 times a week, that means they get a lot of down time to make sure their nervous system can recover, and allows them to adapt to increasing loads in a manner that lets them progress forwards and not back. Along with off days increasing nutrition intake is also important with getting stronger, this is not the time to cut calories and try and cut down. Getting stronger takes a lot of hard work and can take its toll on your body so make sure you keep yourself in top shape by being in a caloric surplus when doing so.
If you want to get strong then make sure you have a plan, get adequate recovery, and don’t skip out on the big 3 lifts!