Commandment #1:Though Shalt Not Lift Too Much Weight
You've seen this before. Some guy loading up the bar with what seems to be plate after plate. You think to yourself "Damn...dude must be a beast" Then, just when you think you're about to see an incredible feat of strength...this happens:
This, ladies and gentlemen, is half-repping. You don't want to be a half-repper. It's a serious condition where your ego thinks you can lift more weight than you're body actually can. Those half inch squats aren't doing a thing for you.
Now don't get me wrong, there are times when partial reps can be useful, like when trying to break through a plateau. But that's not what we're talking about here. What we're talking about is loading so much weight on the bar that all you can muster is a paltry inch or two.
While those "squats" are an obvious violation, there are other, more subtle ways, this sin can rear its ugly head. If your goal is muscle size, for instance, the ideal rep range is generally between 8-12. Using too much weight will either prevent you from getting those last few crucial reps or will force you to use cringe-worthy technique. Either way, you won't be getting as big as you potentially
This fitness sin is not just limited to lifting, mind you. It can take many other forms. Maybe it's the runner who thinks they can suddenly put in the miles of an Olympic athlete. Maybe it's the new guy in your Yoga class who has trouble with the basics but ALWAYS does the advanced variation of each pose. In all of these cases, ego is the enemy of results.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm all for pushing yourself to your limit. The problem, though, is when you push yourself too hard, too soon, your body simply isn't ready for it. Not only do you look ridiculous, but you're also putting yourself at serious risk of injury.
Fitness is a journey and there are no short cuts. Trying to skip some of the steps will only delay your gains, or worse, get you injured . If you stay focused and dedicated, you'll eventually be able to lift that weight, run that time or hold that pose, but if you try to do it before you've earned it, you're in for a rude awakening...and possibly a hernia. For best results, be patient and check your ego at the door.