“Lightweights are for increasing the endurance and heavyweights are for building strength” – which is true. Endurance vs Strength? – Both are different fitness attributes.
“You need to lift light weights with high repetitions for losing weight or cutting, and heavy weights with low reps if you need to bulk or gain muscle” – which is absolutely a myth that I’ve busted in the above-linked article.
But what are muscle endurance and muscle strength? Which one is important and on which attribute you should work upon? What are the benefits of developing endurance and strength? Let’s get into this.
What is Muscle Endurance?
Muscle endurance is just the repetitive strength of the muscle to endure more pain and score more repetitions. (Muscle Endurance = मसल की कितने बार वजन उठाने की, या मूवमेंट परफॉर्म करने की श्रमता )
In other terms, Endurance is basically till how long you can perform and sustain an exercise. Cardio is an example of endurance-based training.
7 Benefits of Developing Endurance:
- Mainly trains Type I muscle fibers (slow-twitch) of your body which don’t get fatigued too easily and perform a higher amount of total work.
- You can perform an exercise/movement for a longer period of time.
- Higher repetitions at the gym can be scored.
- The development of small twitch fibers and endurance would be highly beneficial in performing functional and daily activities and you won’t get tired too easily.
- Would help you to improve mobility, stability, and a good posture for longer periods of time.
- Improves aerobic capacity of your body.
- It helps to increase performance in endurance-based sports that require repetitive actions for longer hours. (E.g. cricket, running a marathon, playing hockey or football, high volume workouts, etc.)
How to Increase Muscle Endurance?
As the law of specificity states, “To get better in a certain type of training or develop a certain fitness attribute, you need to train specifically over time”.
So suppose your goal is to get better at cycling, practicing cycling overtime for longer periods would help you achieve that. To get better at walking for a longer time, similarly walking and increasing the time duration of walking over time would do that.
If your goal at the gym is to perform higher reps in a particular exercise, training with light-moderate weights so that you’re able to score at least 12+ reps would be ideal. The repetitions could be 15-20 or even more than that depending upon the goal and your muscular endurance.
The Bottom Line is:
(1) If your goal at the gym is increasing muscular endurance, choosing a light-mod weight so that you can at least perform 12+ reps should be your training style. This is called the endurance type of weight training.
2) Other ways to increase endurance are performing more sets of a particular exercise, training for longer periods of time, decreasing the rest period between the sets, adding super-sets, etc.
3) Performing Cardio Exercises like treadmill, walking, elliptical, cycling would also contribute to increasing your overall endurance and body conditioning.
These all play around with the intensity and metabolic stress which would help you increase endurance over time.
What is Muscle Strength?
Muscle strength is your absolute strength/power to lift any weight. In other words, it’s the ability of your muscle to exert force and lift heavy weights for shorter periods of time.
(Muscle Strength = मसल की कितने ज़्यादा वेट उठाने की श्रमता )
There are many types of Muscle Strength like absolute strength, explosive strength, relative strength, etc.
Eg: You need to pick up a big heavy barbell at the gym, or maybe lift and pick up a bag filled with weights, this would require your strength i.e. your ability to generate force and pick up that heavyweight.
7 Benefits of Developing Strength:
- Makes you powerful and stronger in terms of strength.
- Strength training would help you to burn more calories, that too in a shorter period of time. This will also help in weight management in the long term.
- Strength training amazingly would help you in body recomposition i.e. building muscle and reducing body fat.
- Working on muscle strength helps to preserve muscle mass and avoid muscle loss/sarcopenia.
- It’ll lead to stronger muscles, grip strength, bones, and reduce the symptoms of osteoporosis and arthritis.
- Better strength would help you immensely in functional and day-to-day activities where muscle power to pick up heavy objects is required.
- At the gym, higher strength would make you lift more weights and also in powerlifting. Beast Mode: ON, Lift heavy;)
How to Increase Muscle Strength?
(1) Strength training (mainly compound movements), explosive lifts, and striving to lift more and more weights over time is the answer.
Progressive overload will help you increase your muscular strength where your goal would be to lift heavy weights for a shorter period of time i.e. low reps.
(2) Training Intense with Low Volume (less reps, sets, and total workout duration) would help you do that. Train for a shorter duration, but intense. Intensity is the key here.
Did you know that training heavy and intense can make you burn more calories in a short duration of time? #fitnesshnfacts
BONUS for you: How to increase vascularity and get veins on your body?
Endurance V/s Strength – Which is Important and You Should Work On?
Well when it comes to overall fitness, both the attributes have their own places. They’re both important. On which attribute you should work upon entirely depends upon your goal and the sport you’re training for.
Muscle endurance will increase the ability to lift weights for longer periods of time whereas muscle strength would increase your ability to lift more weights.
Work as per your desired goal. If you’re a runner or wish to train for longer periods, increasing endurance might be your fitness goal. If you’re a powerlifter and wish to become stronger, gaining strength should be your focus. For general well-being and overall fitness, working on both attributes would be ideal.
Did you know that slowing down the tempo while performing the eccentric movement can help you to build more muscle? #fitnesshnfacts
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