Do you have to lift heavy (near your max) to grow muscle?


Hi Marc,

I have always been under the conception that it was necessary to lift as heavy as possible up to your one rep max to stimulate max growth. From the info you presented on rep ranges and goals it would appear this is not the case. If my goal is to primarily increase mass (get bigger and more
defined) and not to be a powerlifter should i stick to sets in the rep ranges 8 – 10 dropping down to around 75% of my 1 rep max for these and just forget about lifting the heavier weights for a bit?

I currently have a 1 rep max in the bench of 250lbs but I have pretty much plateaued for quite a while. My usually routine would be:

1 x 10 reps 132lbs, 2 X 6 reps 198lbs, 2 x 3 -4 reps 220lb and then a 1 rep max

Thanks for your time,

Steve Cooper
Belfast, N.Ireland, UK

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Categories: Natural Bodybuilding