BLOT: Lifting heavy doesn’t cause injury.
I had a professor in college that would always use this BLOT abbreviation (stands for “Bottom Line On Top”). He would always say, “Tell me what I should know right away!” He despised students that beat around the bush.
So in an attempt to please him, you should know from the beginning that lifting heavy weights doesn’t cause injury.
There are generally two reasons why you choose to not lift heavy weights:
First, you think that performing fewer reps at a heavier weight won’t be a good workout.
Second, you’re worried that if you strain too much, you’ll get injured.
Not A Good Workout
What constitutes a “good” workout?
It’s actually a little bit of a soul-searching question.
Is it how much you sweat?
Or how long your workout is?
My take on the question is that it’s a matter of intensity.
To me, sprinting at my maximum-effort 12 times for 100 meters is far more tiring than running a 5k.
Not only am I probably going to sweat less, but I’ll also be done working out sooner.
So don’t let this keep you from lifting heavy weights. You’re going to get a great workout in.
Too Much Strain = Injury
“Strain” isn’t correlated to injury. Technique is.
In layman’s terms, lifting incorrectly causes injury.
Believe it or not, more people hurt themselves jogging long distances or doing high volume dumbbell workouts. The effect of every step (or rep) performed incorrectly is compounded.
For example, 100 air squats performed with a rounded lumbar spine is going to to cause an injury.
Mechanics -> Consistency -> Intensity
We won’t push the intensity (“strain”) in a workout until the mechanics are sound.
Then, we want to see you consistently perform those mechanics over time.
And then, and only then, we add intensity.
Can you see how strain doesn’t cause injury? Poor mechanics (technique) leads to injury.
One of the reasons we don’t offer “open gym” at RxFIT is because of the value we see in coaching.
Coaches see heel-striking during running workouts and can fix it before plantar fasciitis follows.
Coaches see anterior pelvic tilts in the bottom of squats and can fix it before you can’t bend over in the morning to tie your shoes.
Coaches see internal rotation of the shoulders in presses and can fix it before they come out of socket.
In short, coaches see the things you never think about when you’re working out.
Lifting weights is an extremely important piece to building strength and making you healthier. But you only get stronger by lifting heavy weights.
If you’re really worried, grab a coach by scheduling a No-Sweat Intro here. They will make you healthier by getting you stronger.