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Please just drop the dumbbells now!

Posted By: Scott Baumann, co-owner and General Manager on 01/26/2012

It’s a beautiful day out today and lots of people are out jogging and trying to get in shape.  This is awesome and I love to see it but there are always one or two people doing something that just makes me want to scream “Please drop the dumbbells right now!” What is it that makes me so crazy?

 Running with light hand weights and doing curls or presses at the same time.  You know what I am talking about and you’ve either done it yourself or you have seen someone doing it. If that is so, then  read on.  Now the idea behind this makes sense. Kill two birds with one stone and get toned up and some strength training in at the same time as you are doing some cardio. Perfect , right? Wrong.

Strength training (the ONLY way to build muscle and “tone”) is only effective with resistance that limits you to a maximum of 15-20 reps at a time. So if you can do 25, 35 or 500 reps with your 5lb dumbells while you run, you are not strength training. As a matter of fact, you are not doing much at all other than asking for an overuse injury. There is virtually no benefit to curling or pressing a light weight hundreds of times and the repetitive nature of these movements will likely cause shoulder or elbow problems.

So drop the hand weights, do your jog or run, and then get some real weights and do your strength training. You don’t need 50 lb dumbbells, but the weight does need to be heavy enough that you cannot do more than 15-20 reps or you will not see the benefits of strength training. And let’s face it, running and curling with pink 5 lb weights just looks silly. J

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