Why aren't you supposed to lift weights every day?
I keep reading the advice that you need to have rest days between heavy lifting. Why is that? It seems like CW to me. Farmers, lumberyard workers, warehouse workers, Construction workers etc., lift heavy stuff every day in their jobs, they don't get to take rest in between. Most of them have great muscles as a result. Does anyone ignore the rest advice and lift every day or most days?
It depends on why you're lifting. The workers you mentioned are lifting as part of their jobs - and their goal is to earn their money, not increase strength. You increase strength by breaking things down a little - AND HEALING. It's the healing that occurs during the rest period which actually makes you stronger.
Because although they do lift heavy things day to day it is different then working out. If you go to the gym and lift as hard as you possibly can every day you will A) Over train and your lifts will go down significantly B) most likely end up getting an injury that will also hinder your workouts.
You lift as heavy as you can which causes micro tears to the muscle. Then you eat good quality food and alot of protein which is used to repair these tears. The repairing happens when you rest. If you don't rest you don't repair and grow.
"Live Free or Die"
You're not comparing apples to apples.
Originally Posted by Nomad1
Farmers don't go out and lift a sack of flour weighing 100lbs, then wake up the next morning an say 'today I'm going to hit 105 lbs in the sack lift'.
Your body adapts (or not) to a certain amount of stress, adapts to it and that's it.
That's why its called progressive resistance training.
I basically just lift until I need a break, If I feel strong, I go for it, if not I might just do body weight stuff like dips and chins.
Or I might just take one look at the weights, turn around and walk out.
Having a 13 week old baby in the house makes following a set program pointless these days.
People in warehouse are doing what you'd call low-intensity / high-repetition exercises, and as it has been said before - they are doing at a level where they have already have adapted.
you can of course go to the gym and do a 20kg barbell squat / deadlift combo every day - wont get you much though, except maybe chronic-cardio-like injuries.
The point is, once you set personal records at every session (and this is what weightlifting is all about) the you need the time to recover. Initially maybe 48 hours, and later (at an elite level, so most of us dont have to worry) maybe as long as a week or even a month. look at Rippetoe's books for example for more detailed explanations
Yes in doing repetive type work the muscles quickly adapt to the specific task. Keep in mind though, this type of day in day out work always leads to overuse injuries. Done over many years it leads to permanent damge in the way of osteo arthritis, cartlidge deterioration. I worked in construction and almost none of the guys out there are in what you'd call good shape. The older ones are all in some kind of chronic pain.
To properly and safely build muscle, the stress or intensity must be sufficient then enough time must pass to allow for not only recovery from the workout but for the adaptation to actually take place. That only takes place when the recovery phase is completed. Something else a lot of people don't realize is that it's not just a matter of the muscles themselves recovering, it's the whole body on a deep systemic level. When you train intensely you are stimulating/stressing the central nervous system, immune system, all the organs and really every cell of your body. Doing such everyday can only lead to a breakdown and pretty quickly. Most people would do even better than whatever their current progress is by simply allowing more time between the real intense type of workouts.
In any case weight training everyday is completely not an option if your goal is to build muscle and be healthy and feel your best.
Last edited by Forever Young; 03-14-2011 at 07:14 AM.
I say experiment for yourself. That is the only way to really find out. Try working out every day for a few weeks to see how you feel. If you are fatigued, hurting, or just not making any progress, then reevaluate and change what you are doing. If you are making gains, then keep with it. There are a lot of athletes that workout daily, including bodyweight and weight training workouts. However, many have the genetics to support that. You might too...
Healing is the most important part of lifting. If you don't rest, you don't heal properly which will slow results &/or cause injury.
You get stronger when you recover...
Always betting against CW is as dumb as always following it.
Originally Posted by Nomad1