Working with Weights pt. 2

Working with Weights pt. 2

Following on from first post weight training that focused on hypertrophy (or the enlargement of an organ or tissue from the increase in size of its cells).

Another way to train with weights is for strength endurance. You won’t build muscle mass as fast but this is a great way to build up cardiovascular strength, muscular endurance and burn fat.

First lets look  at the relationship between the maximum number of repetitions in conjunction with intensity and it’s effect on the body (training effect).

Weights Table - Strength

Weights Table - Strength & Hypertrophy Weights Table - Hypertrophy Weights Table - Endurance

NOTE: This information is for a trained individual. If you’re only starting out use this as a rough guide starting at the bottom of the table and work your way up.

The previous post focussed on the 3rd section of the table (click on the relevant section of the table for more info). This one focuses on the 4th. But before we delve into the table, how do we read it?

Maximum number of repetitions – the number of repetitions needed for the desired training effect

% of maximum weight – This will be an individualized weight where you find the maximum weight you can lift ONCE and can’t do any more after that 1 repetition (have someone in your gym help you). You then take the percentage of that 1RM (RM = repetition maximum) to figure out the weight you should be lifting for the desired training effect.

Training effect – the effect of the chosen rep range & % of 1RM on the body


RIGHT! Now we can decipher the information on the table it’s time for some math! Whoever says that people who lift weights are all muscle and no brains have got it all wrong!

We’ll use the bicep curl as an example again. Let’s say your 1RM for this exercise is 20kg. You successfully (with great difficulty and effort – you should be dying by the end of this 1 rep. maximal effort) lift and lower the weight through your full range of motion. In order to work toward strength-endurance gains we number crunch

20kg x .606 = 12.12 (lets round down to 12kg)

20kg x .688 = 13.76 (14kg)

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So with this information you would start off with a 12kg weight, 20 repetitions at 3 sets advancing up to a 14kg weight, 13 reps at 3 sets for the effect of strength-endurance gains. If you would rather sweat it out with weights rather than endlessly run on a treadmill use this information to help you burn fat and let your muscle definition show.

Depending on what your personal fitness goals are you can use this information to help get you closer to your targets!

Have you found this helpful or would you like to put in what works for you? Need some clarification? Let me know!


1 – Poliquin, Charles – The Poliquin Principles, Dayton Writers Group, 1997

2 – Marieb, Elaine Nicpon – Human Anatomy & Physiology / Elaine N. Marieb, Katja Hoehn.-9th ed. 2013

I'm currently studying a Bachelor in Health Science - Nutritional Medicine with a background in dance and fitness. I believe sharing knowledge is the key. I hope my love for food, fitness and well-being along with my studies helps you in finding something useful. Enjoy!

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