Looking to boost your overall strength?
We’ve gone ahead and assembled a collection of some of the best tips out there to help increase your maximum weight and bust through your plateaus!
10 Ways To Increase Your Overall Strength
1. Incorporate plyometric exercises into your routine
These exercises help your body develop the stretch shortening cycle, which allows you to use stored elastic energy as power.
Think of a rubber band being stretched out and then released – the quickness and power with which it snaps back is an example of the stretch shortening cycle at work.
Examples of exercises that can help with this include box jumps and jump squats.
You will find when doing other exercises, like the bench press, you can better incorporate the stretch shortening cycle by imagining you are a rubber band stretching out as you lower the weight and then use the built up force to quickly snap up.
2. Train explosively
When training explosively, reduce the weight down to 60% of your 1RM and perform the movements as quickly as possible while still using good form.
These exercises will help improve your acceleration and power and will translate well when translate well when trying to increase your maximum weight on the 1RM.
Working with bands can help turn many exercises into more explosive ones, but the tried and true classics are best like the clean & jerk and the snatch.
3. Reduce the total volume
Rather than training 4-5 sets, reduce it down to 2-3 at a lower rep range.
Focus on the speed of the lift and being explosive particularly on the positive portion of the lift.
You will find you get tired out much more quickly but you will be able to increase your maximum weight faster.
4. Train heavy
Training with heavy weights (close to your 1RM) will drastically improve your strength by using high-threhold motor units.
These muscle fibers are the best for increasing strength however they do tire out quickly.
Since you will be training low reps stick to the large compound exercises like squats, deadlifts and bench-press.
Despite the weight being heavy, try to move it through the positive portion of the lift quickly.
5. Take longer breaks
Instead of resting the usual 45 seconds between sets, try upping that to about 3 minutes.
Given that you are lifting much heavier weight there will be a lot of pressure on your system so you will need more time to recover.
Giving yourself a few minutes will make you feel a lot more fresh on the next lift and will lead to a stronger overall performance on your later sets.
6. Figure out what the weak link is and target it
See where your lifts are dragging and incorporate new exercises to strengthen that muscle.
For example, if your upper back muscles are weaker, do more pull-ups, rows and pull-downs to bring them up to snuff.
Rather than slowing down your overall progress because of one particular muscle, spend extra time working on it so you can continue your progress.
7. Stand firm
Don’t do heavy lifts on an uneven surface like an exercise ball.
While it may be fashionable to do these exercises, they are very unsafe and won’t build additional mass or strength.
Instead, stand on firm even ground and lift heavy.
8. Keep Your testosterone levels high
The male hormone testosterone is the most important factor when it comes down to increasing strength and building muscle.
If you see a guy in your gym that is really strong and muscular chances are he is doing everything he can to keep his testosterone production sky high.
The most effective way to boost testosterone production is taking in a testosterone booster– See the best 3 testosterone boosters here
You may be wondering “what will happen if my testosterone production is higher?”
These are the benefits:
- You will build more muscle mass
- You will get stronger faster
- You will maintain your muscle mass better
- You will get leaner and more cut
- Your sex drive will increase as well as harder erections
- better mood and your confidence will increase
That’s why most athletes and natural bodybuilders that are serious about building muscle do everything they can to increase their testosterone production naturally.
9. Do sprints
Whether you do interval runs or hill sprints, this exercise will help develop the power and explosiveness in your legs.
Since they incorporate the glutes, hamstrings and quads, the strength will directly translate into a stronger squat and deadlift.
10. Leave static stretching to after your workout
Stick to dynamic stretches prior to your workout as these will help warm-up the muscle groups without reducing your strength.
Yes, that’s right, static stretching prior to a workout will actually REDUCE your strength as it fatigues the muscle.
There you have it! The easiest and safest ways to increase your overall strength fast.