There is a constant argument between those that believe in lifting Heavy Weights versus those that believe in lifting Lighter Weights. Their Goal is the same – build strength and muscle mass.

There are times that I feel like I have the Devil (heavy) on one shoulder and the Angel (light) on the other. My head is in between these two opposites – it gives me a head ache.

Then – of course – there is the big bad – Ego. You look around the gym and the “Guys” with big guns are always lifting heavy weights. Am I being shamed by lifting lighter weights.

Spotted this Article Lifting Lighter Weights Is Just As Effective As Heavy Weights.

A new study from McMaster University in Canada has shown that lifting lighter weights is just as effective for building muscle as lifting heavy ones.

Researchers say the key is to get your muscles just as tired as they would with heavier weights by lifting lighter weights for more repetitions.

“Fatigue is the great equaliser here,” said Stuart Phillips, a professor of kinesiology at McMaster University. “Lift to the point of exhaustion, and it doesn’t matter whether the weights are heavy or light.

Then there is the question – How light is light? – How heavy is heavy?

The first group lifted lighter weights (30-50 per cent of the maximum weight the individuals could lift), for 20-25 repetitions per set for three sets. The second group lifted heavier weights (between 75-90 per cent of the maximum weight people could lift) for 8-12 repetitions per set.

So we define lighter weights as the weight which brings you to exhaustion between 20-25 reps – and – heavier weights as the weight which brings you to exhaustion between 8-12 reps. Assuming that each rep – no matter what the weight – takes the same amount of time to complete – the lighter workout is going to take 2-3 times longer than the heavier workout.

Since most of us are time limited when we walk into the gym – then stick with heavier weights. Maybe – when you have time on your hands – switch it up with lighter weights.

At least now, I have a standard to follow.

But – if I should “Lift to the point of exhaustion” what happened to the rule about “leaving one in the tank.” 😉