Light Weights vs Heavy Weights Bodybuilding

lifting lighter weights
lifting lighter weights

Is it better to use light weights vs heavy weights in your bodybuilding workouts?

Is it better to use light weights vs heavy weights in your bodybuilding workouts?

The best workouts include a combination of light weights and heavy weights.
I remember hearing friends encouraging me to “work the muscle” when cranking out repetitions of an exercise. Eventually, I really understood what that meant. You don’t need an insane amount of weight to grow. In fact, working with light weight has its benefits. For one, working the muscle means that the muscle is doing the lifting and not your ego. For instance, doing biceps curls with 20 lbs with super strict technique as opposed to 50 lbs with shoddy form does nothing but put you at risk for injury and defeat.

It’s common to witness fit male models lifting lighter weights. Perhaps they have developed a great mind-body connection.
Here is a secret I’m letting you know….

I used to and still lift using light weights. Forcing yourself to lift light ensures that you’re focusing on the targeted muscle while minimizing the use of ancillary muscles. All movements have a positive and a negative motion. The positive phase involved the shortening of the muscle while the negative is the lengthening of it.

While concentrating on the working muscles, I slowly execute the positive. I minimize the urge to use momentum to move the weight. I get a peak contraction at the end of the positive phase. This will cause my muscle tissue to forcefully contract while blood is flushed into the muscle under tension. More time is taken to lower the weight (negative phase). I perform 20 repetitions with light weight.  This technique helps me summon more muscle fibers and assists in bridging a deeper connection between your mind and body.


The ideal bodybuilding workout is a combination of light weights vs heavy weights. Try mixing thing up during your next workout.

3 Reasons Lifting Lighter Weights Gets You in Shape Faster

Lifting lighter weights ,which is a proven method for getting in shape, offers many benefits to fitness enthusiasts. In comparison to heavy lifting, light training is overlooked and seen as an unlikely alternative to getting fit.

Why You Should Start Lifting Lighter Weights

Heavy weights is a numbers game

I’ve made the mistake of falling into the fitness trap.

This is the trap where your only concern is to out-lift your previous record.

Don’t get me wrong. Setting goals designed at improving your lifts are great.

But at some point, it becomes a numbers game.

My strongest lift ever was a single rep 505 lbs deadlift

Admittedly, my form was off, but I did it. I was proud of my achievement as my peers watched in admiration.

At peak physical fitness, I was squatting 495 lbs. I’d be ballsy and do 4 reps at 395 lbs way past parallel – a respectable weight-load for a natural bodybuilder.

At some point you hit the wall and enter the territory of diminishing returns. This happens when the risks greatly exceeds the benefits.

Famed bodybuilder, Shawn Ray maintained an injury-free bodybuilding career by sticking to light weights and strict form. In retrospect, I didn’t see the point in out-performing myself and running the risk of blowing out my knees and lower back.

So why do I advocate lifting lighter weights?

Keep on reading….

Lifting lighter weights isn’t only for beginners (Reason #1)

Beginners should learn to lift lighter weights at the start of their weight lifting journey. Learning proper form at an early age greatly reduces the likelihood of injury.
The mind-muscle connection, which is a technique designed to enhance muscle fiber contractions through deep concentration, is crucial for beginners. In the end, greater gains are made when practicing years of solid lifting technique and engaging the mind-muscle connection.

Lifting lighter weights reduces overtraining (Reason #2)

Overtraining, which I cover briefly in this post, is the number one reason many fail to improve their physiques.

Above all, lifting lighter weights needs to be an integral part of your workout program.

By cycling between heavy workout phases and lighter cycles, you give your body the opportunity of making incredible gains at an astonishing rate. You also give your body much needed rest from lifting heavy. Your joints and ligaments, which are under constant stress, can effectively recover. You can expect an increase in overall body strength once you transition to heavy weight lifting.

Lifting lighters weights improves the development of ancillary muscles (Reason #3)

As weight lifters our focus is always on the showcase muscles. Who doesn’t like walking around with a pumped up chest and bulging biceps? But what about smaller muscles? The muscles we often ignore in favour of the attention grabbers.

Below, I outline exercises that target smaller muscle bellies

  • Rear delt dumbbell raises
  • Wrist Curls
  • Overhead Tricep Extensions

These exercises target muscles we often ignore. Your rear deltoid will never get as much attention as your chest, but when sufficiently developed it will add dimension and thickness to your frame.

If you suffer from thinner forearms, a steady dose of barbell wrist curls will have them bulging from your t-shirt.

Overhead dumbbells tricep extensions work wonders on your triceps. Lastly, it’s always great to switch things up by incorporating new exercises to the mix.


Remember that lifting lighter weights shouldn’t be a numbers game. If you’re heading to the gym anytime soon, leave your ego at the door and pick up the smaller weights. Focus on flawless execution and really hone in on the mind-muscle connection. You’d be surprised just how satisfying light workouts can be.

Train Your Body Type For Faster Results

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How to Train Your Body Type – Free Guide

Discover How I Train My Body Type

When you first start training at your local gym, you mimic your peers without fully understanding how their workouts affect your body type.

After spending years working out and copying what other guys at the gym were doing, you come to the realization that you’ve been wasting your time.

I get it.

We’ve all been there.

Thirty years ago when I first started training, I was reluctant to interrupt a stranger’s workout for training advice.

Annoying teenagers always found themselves at the gym, and as a result, I didn’t want to be like them.

So how do you get in shape without seeking the advice of seasoned weight lifters?

I never missed a workout and my body still looked like sh*t WTF?

Getting in shape isn’t easy and it’s not all about practice and dedication.

After all, I trained five days a week and I never missed a single workout.
I had put in the time, effort and work ethic and still, my body looked like crap.

Moreover, I was overcome with shame when asked how long I’d been training.

I had known guys who barely lifted that looked better than me. My lack of success left me feeling frustrated and defeated.

As time went on, I would spend upwards of 40% of my income on supplements and food. Keep in mind I was a full time university student holding down a part time job – money was tight.

So for years I’d follow this useless workout routine that offered minimal gains, generic exercises and was super demotivating…

Until one day, I made a discovery…

It’s about your body type

To know where you’re going you must first know where you are. Discovering my body type helped me do four things.

  • Workout smarter
  • Eat the right foods for my body type
  • Save time in the gym
  • Save money on costly supplements I no longer needed

There are three basic body types, of which your body’s response to training is dependent upon. Ectomorphs have the inherit ability of developing some of the best physiques compared to endomorphs and mesomorphs. My free guide takes an in-depth look at the three somatotypes and outlines the best ways to maximize muscle growth while reducing fat.

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