How Heavy Should My Weights Be?


HOLLYWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 02:  TV personality/author Jillian Michaels visits Hollywood Today Live at W Hollywood on December 2, 2016 in Hollywood, California.  (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)

If you’re new to strength training, you may be wondering how heavy your weights should be. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, because what may feel heavy for you might feel totally different to the person next to you. It’s all about how strong you’re currently feeling, as well as your previous experience with weightlifting.

But rather than just guessing which weights to pick up, Jillian Michaels, celebrity trainer and creator of the app My Fitness by Jillian Michaels, has a no-nonsense tip anybody can use. “If you can bang out more than 12 reps with great form, the weight is too light,” she told POPSUGAR.

And it’s really that simple. If you can do 12 consecutive reps without breaking a sweat or feeling like it’s a challenge, you need to pick up something heavier. This goes for just about everything you do in the gym, from deadlifts to squats to shoulder press to bicep curls. Choose something that makes the last two reps difficult and stick with it. Once those reps start to feel easier again, that means you’re ready to graduate to something even heavier.

Image Source: Getty / David Livingston



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