gaining muscle

The term weightlifting is now used quite widely in the fitness world. It is great to see anyone picking up a weight in any for at. However, weightlifting in the traditional sense, Olympic Weightlifting, is a discipline of its own. With growing exposure through the recent Olympics, Crossfit and other media sources, participation is growing. Weightlifting has many benefits, not just physical, inspired by here’s 5 of the main ones…

Weightlifting benefit 1: It makes you strong

This is perhaps the most obvious benefit. Weightlifting involves moving heavy objects from a-b on a frequent basis, this inevitably means you need to build strength to do so. Furthermore, the goal of weightlifting is to be able to lift more weight over time. So, to accomplish this, you are also required to build more strength than you previously had.

Weightlifting makes you stronger
Weightlifting makes your body stronger all over.

Being strong has more benefits than just being able to move heavy objects. As Mark Bell says, “strength is never a weakness” and this applies in more ways than one. Done properly, weightlifting strengthens your body to protect your body. Think of it like building layers to reinforce you. The stronger you are the more protected your bones and  joints are. It means that you can withstand more external force should you ever need to. You become less prone to injury and essentially less susceptible to wear and tear as you age.

So weightlifting strengthens you physically, but in doing so also benefits your overall health. Kind of like two birds with one stone!

Weightlifting benefit 2: It improves your athleticism

Olympic weightlifting is very technical. Professional weightlifter make it look easy, however in reality it isn’t. Those that have tried to snatch or clean and jerk will understand how difficult it is to time and execute a lift correctly.

Weightlifting good for athleticism
Weightlifting builds all around athleticism

In order to do so, you have to develop a level of athleticism that is unique but highly beneficial. Speed, balance, coordination, flexibility and strength all combined. Whilst this is developed in training and lifting it also transfers easily to life outside of weightlifting. You can ask most weightlifters to perform other sports or movements and they will be able to do so almost instantly. This is due to the development of a wide range of skills through weightlifting, not just strength.

Therefore, for the everyday person, practicing weightlifting can help develop attributes that support other goals. Beyond anything else, becoming more athletic is a pretty cool feeling and one which will make you feel great in yourself. Weightlifting can achieve this.

Weightlifting benefit 3: It builds mental toughness

If you speak to any weightlifter they will tell you that there is much more at play than simply moving a heavy weight. Weightlifting will force you to face challenges that you previously thought impossible. In order to get better you must attempt lifts that at one point were out of your reach. Building yourself up to do anything that has a chance of failure is a big mental battle. Weightlifting will allow you to put yourself in this situation regularly and train you to ignore your doubts and try anyway! That is always a positive to take away, never fear failure.

Weightlifting builds resilience
Failure is inevitable in weightlifting, however it builds mental toughness coming back time and time again.

However, inevitably at some point you will fail. Not only this, but you will fail over and over again. This is where the real mental toughness is built. It is extremely disheartening to fail at a singular task repeatedly but with weightlifting you will learn to never give up and come back to try again another day. To get better you must have this attitude. Soon enough you will realise that with enough patience and practice you will overcome the failures and get better. Taking this into every day life builds a type of thinking that not many people will have.

It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up – Babe Ruth

Weightlifting benefit 4: It gives you self-confidence

I alluded to this earlier on, but weightlifting will give you levels of self-confidence you previously didn’t have. Due to a combination of the points so far, after some time you change how you think of yourself. Learning that you are not made of glass and are mentally tougher than you imagined has a really positive effect on self-confidence. All of a sudden, other areas of life that you would have backed away from or been hesitant about become less confronting. You believe in yourself and understand that at some point you will overcome any barriers.

Weightlifting appearance confidence
Weightlifting improves physical appearance and confidence

Furthermore, a byproduct of trying to lift heavier weights is an improved physique. This comes without realising it as your main goal is to weightlift better. However, provided you train properly, one day you will look in the mirror and notice how much your body has changed. Having an improved physical appearance obviously does wonders for self-confidence. After all, many people try for years to get this through running or bodybuilding. Weightlifting allows you to achieve this almost subconsciously which is even better.

Weightlifting benefit 5: It is a great release

Finally, weightlifting provides a great release. Due to the face that you are trying to move heavy objects, a certain level of exertion is needed. This provides a great way to get rid of any built up stress or anger. You can step away from the day-to-day grind and engage in something different. You can switch your mind off and throw all you have at improving technique, strength or overall lifts.

Weightlifting feels good
The satisfaction of a perfect lift is hard to beat

Not only this but almost nothing feels better than getting a lift right. Perfectly timed, perfectly executed and the weight feeling like feathers. One minute you’re working hard to move the weight, the next you’re under it and standing up. Everything clicks and the feeling of satisfaction, herd work paying, off is incredible!

So there we have it. Five reasons why weightlifting can benefit you. If you haven’t given it a go year I would encourage you too. If you have then I hope you’re enjoying it as much as I do.

Pleas leave your weightlifting experiences or questions in the comments below ?

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