Strength goals are great for 3 reasons. First, you’re going to get strong! (duh) It doesn’t matter what your fitness goals are because getting stronger will help you achieve them. Second, you’re going to look good…as long as you follow a diet that helps reduce body fat. Want to have that “toned” look? Get stronger! Finally, strength lifts will keep you healthy for the years to come. Denser bones are a must-have as you age to reduce the risk of injuries like broken hips, a very common injury in the elderly. Now, without further ado here are your strength goals!
Military Press 100% of your body weight
Military presses will be your weakest movement. You don’t get to start with the bar over your head so there’s no “rebound” effect like the bench press or squat. You start from your shoulders and have to press the weight from a “dead” position. Pressing your own body weight will be one heck of an accomplishment. Aside from strong shoulders and triceps you’ll have incredibly strong core muscles (transverse abdomens, obliques, and erectors).
Bench Press 150% of your body weight
Ahh, the beloved bench press. Seen as the test of “manliness” by many gym rats for several decades. Most strongmen and athletes will attest that the bench press is the one lift they care about least. However, bench pressing has some great benefits such as packing on plenty of upper body size and strength in the chest and triceps. Try to keep your grip close enough so when your arms lower the weight down your upper arm is 45 degrees or less when compared to your torso. Any greater of an angle and you will have chronic shoulder pain down the road.
Back Squat 200%/Front Squat 150% of your body weight
The squat is probably the most hated, yet most beneficial barbell lift there is. It not only demonstrates your leg strength but core stability and hip/ankle mobility. If you can’t get your hips to or below parallel then you’ll have to work on your range of motion before going too heavy with this lift. And, you’re going to want to improve your squat because the more you squat the more adrenaline you’ll have for other lifts. Many elite level powerlifters perform heavy squats before bench press due to a spike in adrenaline making their bench press numbers higher.
Deadlift 250% of your body weight
There’s a reason this is known as the ‘man lift’. Simply grab the bar and pull until you stand straight up. I said simple, not easy. While grip strength is important in all lifts it takes on a whole new level of importance when deadlifting. In order to pull 250% of your body weight you better have hands that can form coal into diamonds. In addition, your hamstrings and low back will be as strong as iron. Practice ‘bracing’ to better prepare your core to handle this amount of weight. Oh, and you’ll look strong too with a huge back and arms.
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STAY FIT MY FRIENDS!