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Strength training for better performance
Whenever you put yourself on a strength training routine, there are a variety of factors you may wish to touch upon with your program. Such factors include being able to generate a maximum amount of force, increasing the elasticity of the muscle fibres and then also working on your endurance capabilities.
Whatever your primary goal is, that what will help to determine the type of strength training that you should be utilizing.
If your goal is to work on the maximum amount of force you are able to generate, then lifting very heavy weights in the rep range of six to ten reps is going to be what is most beneficial for you. This will enable you to work on both muscular sarcoplasmic hypertrophy (increase in the sarcoplasm surrounding muscle tissue) along with myofibril hypertrophy (increase in size of the actual muscle tissue). Be sure that you are allowing for enough rest in between each set - shooting for about 45 seconds to one and a half minutes.
Next comes the goal of increasing your elasticity. This is going to be best accomplished with plyometric type of strength training. Examples of such would be jump squats, clap push-ups, jump lunges, vertical rebounds and so on. Any type of movement that gets you reacting in a very rapid manner will help you reach your goal of improving this component of your fitness. This type of work is quite intense in nature as well so you should be sure you are getting at least a day or two of rest between sessions. Furthermore, often it will work your cardiovascular system as well so it may not be necessary to perform quite so much cardio work as part of your program (cutting back will help with reducing the chances that you start overtraining yourself).
Finally, if your goal is muscular endurance, then you want to work towards being able to better remove the build-up of the byproduct lactate, as this is what causes the feelings of fatigue that force you to stop. In order to do so, when performing your lifts, you will want to work in a higher rep range; somewhere between ten and fifteen repetitions. Note however that going higher than fifteen usually doesn't provide to be much benefit so if you can easily complete this many reps, then it's time to bump up the weight more.
Regardless of the manner in which you are trying to train, getting on a good program can be one of the most beneficial things you do as far as your health and fitness level is concerned. Weight lifting has a vast number of other benefits aside from your performance level that it would be really silly not to take advantage of what this exercise has to offer.