Like to use free weights? Free weights are a great and inexpensive way to gain strength and build muscle. But in order to reap the benefits of a free weight workout, you need to watch out for the 3 Ps of weight training. Can you guess what those are?
The 3 Ps of weight training are: Posture, Pace, and Pulmonary (ok I admit I took a little poetic license on that last one). But here is how each one fits into your weight workout:
Posture: In a world where we are used to being slumped over our computer screen, it is easy to forget about good posture. Good posture means a position with a tall, engaged core with shoulders back. Good posture during weight training is so important. Without good posture you put a lot of pressure on your lower back and other muscles instead of engaging the muscles you want to target with the weights. Good posture also wards off injury.
Pace: Pace is important in weight training because without proper pacing of reps you either don’t let the muscles work enough (too fast) or you let them rest too long (too slow). A general rule to start with for weights is 2 seconds out and 2 seconds to return. And immediately start the next rep once you return. That means each rep should take about 4 sec. So 15 reps should take 1 min.
Pulmonary: Pulmonary stands for breathing. You need to BREATHE when you exercise. Breathing helps supply your body with oxygen so you don’t get tired as fast and gives you that little extra energy push you need to finish that last rep. The rule with breathing is to breathe out on the most difficult part of the exercise and breathe in on the easier part. Not sure which part is easier or harder? Try putting the exercise into every day terms. For example a squat is similar to picking up a box from the floor. Is it harder to pick up the box from the floor (fighting against gravity) or place it down?
So there you have it, your 3 Ps for proper weight training. Next time you grab a pair of dumbbells pick one of the Ps to focus on and see what a difference posture, pacing, and pulmonary (breathing) make on your routine. Happy lifting!