It seems like I have this conversation at least once a month at my gym. The conversation usually goes like this…Me: “If your goal is to get STRONGER, then you should really be lifting more weight.” Female athlete: (let’s call her Jackie) “I don’t want to get a bulky or bulkier.” Me: “You won’t.”
So to my friends at the gym that may be guilty of saying this, stop! You’re driving me insane. You’re not going to get bulky if you’re lifting heavy weights! Weight lifters lift in sets of 1-5 reps with high weights/percentages, body builders lift in sets of 10-20 reps at low weights/percentages. Think about most Olympic lifters you have seen? Would you say these folks are bulky, probably not, right? This is because they are training more neurological as opposed to morphological. Now think of a body builder. Most of them look strong, but they aren’t. We have seen the guy that comes in the gym ripped from a thousand dumbbell curls, yet he can’t clean his own weight. Do you get the point? If you think by cutting down the weight and increasing the volume that you are not going to get bulky, think again. Moderate light weight plus high volume is a workout designed for a body building.
Yes, some of my clothes have gotten tighter in my shoulder, thigh and gluteus maximus region. However, I have also lost weight/inches everywhere else. I am not bulky like a dude, I am lean and in shape. In closing, let’s say you get a little bulky? My response to you is….So what. So what if you look a little bulky. It’s a damn sight better then looking too thin or too flabby. Strong is sexy, embrace it.
One final thought….I find it interesting that for the majority, when it comes to ladies, we (coaches) have to push them to lift heavier, yet for the men we have to polity suggest they take it down a bit. I believe this to be true for a few reasons, for the ladies it is a belief that they will get bulky, for the men, they usually need to check there egos at the door and practice good form. I tend to have to check my ego at the door.