How Hard Should You Be Working Out?

By Rozel Gonzales, B.Comm, MBA, FIS CanFit, YMCA


IN THE BEGINNING.... Most people do not really know how hard they can really push themselves.  For beginners, the slightest sensation of fatigue may cause them to stop.  Most of the time, their bodies just turn off, give up and stop.  As the weight training progresses, your body should become more used to this feeling.  It adapts, and with time, you should be able to withstand this sensation for longer periods of time!  I know, its sounds a  little masochistic... but its really true!  Your muscles need to experience what is called, progressive overload.  Meaning that in order to improve,  your muscles must constantly be challenged to do something it could not do before! 


Now, don't get me wrong.  You should NEVER feel sharp pain... like bones crunching or muscles ripping!  If you are doing your exercises correctly, you will feel what I would describe as intense muscle fatigue.  This state is sometimes described as MUSCLE FAILURE.  When you are doing your last set, you should feel like you can hardly finish your last rep.  There is a big difference between this and PAIN.

If you are just starting out, you don't have to work until muscle failure.  Give yourselves time to get used to the movements.  Learn the proper technique first.  When you are comfortable with this, then you can start challenging yourself a little bit more.


Back to the article archive

Fitmoves home page