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When you first start lifting weights with the aim to build a better physique and/or get stronger it is important that you know where to start and how to progress to avoid injury and to ensure you get the fastest most effective results that also give you a foundation for big gains in the long term. This article explains where you should start and where to progress to, introducing the good old fashion Strength Pyramid.
When I first started lifting regularly I was 18 years old. The first gym I started using was a bodybuilding gym called ‘The Powerhouse’. It was quite small, a bit smelly, and had broken mirrors but I loved it. It was full of the biggest guys I had ever seen in my life who were all very friendly. Like most young guys I gravitated towards the bench press and pumped out reps on that before anything else. After a few weeks I was running on a treadmill when I noticed something in the mirror, something I had never seen before, well not on me anyway.
I had pecs 😃
The trouble is that was all I had and as much as I loved my new pecs they looked pretty silly next to my weaker, smaller looking muscles. It was time to start following a programme. I didn’t really know what I was doing so I grabbed a copy of Flex magazine from the sweaty pile of magazines I found on the gym floor and just started following a programme I found in there. Yep, that is correct, I was brand new to lifting but started following the programme of a world class professional bodybuilder. Now don’t get me wrong I grew and the rest of my muscles caught up with my pecs. In the words of Gary Busy (Point Break Fan salute) I was young, dumb and full of cum! A better idea would have been to think about the long game and build a better foundation first.
The resistance training progression pyramid indicates the foundations you need before you move on to building strength: endurance>hypertrophy>strength. This is what I should have used from the start and I would have progressed faster and with less burn out.
Find out more in part 2 coming soon. Stay strong 💪