Some weight lifters may already know this. A new study by researchers at McMaster University has shown that lighter weights can provide the same muscle growth as heavier weights and that the key to building muscle mass is achieving muscle fatigue, not necessarily lifting the heaviest weight.
Given that Sundays, Tuesday and Thursday are my weight lifting days, I have learned this over time. I only have a certain amount of weight that I can max out on my dumb bells. So because I can not add more weight, I tend to do more reps until I am fatigued. Seems to get good results.
Participants in the study were given sets of weights corresponding to a percentage of what they were physically able to lift. People could lift the heavy weights five to 10 times before fatigue set in; people could lift the lighter weights 24 times before fatigue set in.
“Rather than grunting and straining to lift heavy weights, you can grab something much lighter but you have to lift it until you can’t lift it anymore,” said Stuart Phillips, associate professor of kinesiology at McMaster University.
So here is another excuse that you can eliminate for not wanting to exercise. There is a weight for everyone. Find yours. Get started.
The report appears in PLoS ONE.