Muscle endurance requires a great deal of determination, and many people think that it is more challenging mentally than strength training. So, in this article: workout for muscular endurance, we will be looking at benefits of muscular endurance, how to improve muscular endurance and workouts for muscular endurance amongst other things.
WHAT IS MUSCULAR ENDURANCE?
Muscle endurance is the ability to repeatedly exert force and to stay active for longer periods of time. Muscle endurance is based on long-term measurements of strength. Although muscle endurance is a physical ability, much of it down to mental fortitude.
WHY IS MUSCULAR ENDURANCE IMPORTANT?
There are 4 main characteristics of physical fitness: Muscle Strength, Muscle Endurance, Flexibility, and Balance.
Although muscular endurance is one of the 4 pillars, most people don’t put much focus into it. Most people who lift weights train for strength and hypertrophy, so their endurance is not good.
This is a mistake as muscular endurance training will improve two of the other pillars of fitness, strength and balance. In addition, there are many benefits that come with boosting your muscle endurance.
BENEFITS OF MUSCULAR ENDURANCE:
For all people, muscular endurance training is important because;
- Increases your ability to perform daily tasks: Housework and chores, carrying groceries or your kid, sex.
- Reduces the risk of injury: If you have less muscle endurance, your muscles will become weaker during activities that can lead to injuries (falls, ankle twists, etc.)
- Helps maintain a healthy weight: With better muscle endurance, you can do long-term activities that will help you increase your metabolism and burn more fat each day.
- Build strong muscles, joints, bones: Muscle endurance goes hand in hand with muscle strength. By increasing muscle endurance, you will be able to gain stronger muscles and increase bone strength.
- Improves balance: Poor balance is often caused by a lack of muscle strength. When your muscles are tired, your balance will deteriorate.
- Increases energy levels (this is its main goal after all)
- Helps you sleep better
All in all, workout for muscle endurance can help improve many aspects of your health, especially your strength training. Also, all the benefits you get from muscle endurance will create their benefits, which really compounds the positive effect muscular endurance has on your existence.
MUSCULAR ENDURANCE IN SPORTS
Sports requires serious muscle endurance. Therefore, for athletes, improving muscle endurance is important. Muscle endurance training is strongly emphasized in the areas of athletic training.
These are the 3 types of muscular endurance used by athletes:
The ability to explode over and over again over long periods of time, with short breaks. Think of wrestlers, boxers, baseball players, tennis, soccer.
The ability to use exert maximum force for short periods of time, such as 60-second sprints, repeatedly. Think of soccer players, sprinters, basketball players.
Ability to stay active with high performance for long periods of time. Think of basketball players, rowers, marathon runners, cross country runners, boxers. Many sports require an overlapping ability of all three types of muscle endurance.
MUSCULAR ENDURANCE TEST
Trainers can assess their clients and athletes with a muscular endurance test before deciding on specifics for the training program.
These tests are perfect for anyone who wants to see how good muscle endurance is.
Push Up Test:
Perform as many push ups as possible until failure or for as long as you can.
Sit Up Test:
Perform as many sit ups as you can for as long as possible until failure or for as long as you can.
Do plank holds for as long as possible.
Wall Squat Test:
Go into the squat position with your back to the wall, and your legs at a 90-degree angle. Keep your heels down and see how long you can hold this position.
HOW TO IMPROVE MUSCULAR ENDURANCE?
There are two types of workout for muscular endurance which are aerobic and anaerobic endurance training.
Anaerobic endurance involves strenuous exercise, consistently and repeatedly, over a short period of time (i.e. bodyweight squats for about 60 seconds), while aerobic endurance the ability to exert a steady sub-maximal force over a longer period of time (i.e. a 40 minute run).
Aerobic exercise includes running, swimming, cycling, rowing etc. These exercises should be done at a steady and very fast pace so that your heart can provide enough oxygen to the muscles. It is a form of stamina but also trains your muscles so that they do not get fatigued aerobically.
Anaerobic exercise includes weight lifting, sprints, physical training, etc. It is done in a short, quick burst where the heart is unable to supply enough oxygen to the muscles. This will improve your muscle’s ability to maintain exertion without adequate oxygen, which is when lactic acid is produced.
This is a true definition of muscle endurance – repeatedly producing low to moderate strength over a long period of time.
There are many different ways to train anaerobic exercises, such as circuit training, interval training, low weight training and high repetition, and more.
MUSCULAR ENDURANCE VS AEROBIC ENDURANCE:
Aerobic endurance and muscle strength (anaerobic) train your muscles to endure in a variety of ways. This is good for short-term endurance against high intensity resistance, while aerobic endurance is good for long-term endurance at a low intensity (helps keep oxygen up so the muscles can keep going).
Both are very important in sports, especially sports such as soccer, basketball, soccer, boxing and mma.
So, if you want all the improvement in muscle endurance, you will want to have a good combination of anaerobic and aerobic exercise.
UPPER BODY VS LOWER BODY AEROBIC ENDURANCE:
If all you do is running for aerobic endurance, your lower body endurance will be fine, but your upper body aerobic endurance will not go hand in hand with lower body endurance. That’s why mixing your aerobic exercises – swimming, rowing, cycling, running – is great.
As we know swimming, rowing, cycling and running are best for aerobic endurance (long-term endurance), so now we will talk about the best exercise for muscle endurance as it is related to anaerobic training.
BEST WORKOUT FOR MUSCULAR ENDURANCE
Below are some examples of workout for muscular endurance. They do not need equipment and you can do them at home.
- Start by lying on your stomach with your legs flat and upper body propped up by your forearms.
- Tighten your lower back and back muscles, lifting your hips off the ground.
- Hold for as long as possible (aim for intervals of 30 to 45 seconds) and relax. That eliminates one repetition.
- Do 5 reps of your longest hold possible.
- At the end of the fifth rep, your arms should be quivering.
Body weight squats
Begin with your hands at the back of your head and your feet shoulder width apart and your toes pointed.
- Bend your legs and lower your buttocks to the height of your knees forming a 90 degree angle at the bottom of the movement.
- With your weight on your heels, push yourself back upright, and squeeze through your glutes (buttock muscles) on the way up.
- Do 5 sets of 25 repetitions.
- Maintain good posture by keeping your chest out and shoulders back. Do not let your torso become parallel with the ground.
- Try a variation on this traditional squat by widening your stance and pointing your toes outwards. This movement will the inside of your thighs.
- Stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- With your right leg, take a big step forward, then lower your body so that your hind leg touches the floor.
- Push down your front heel and stand back straight.
- Repeat the same exercise with your left leg.
- Do 5 sets of 30 lunges (15 per leg, per set).
Tip: Resist the urge to drop your torso. Keep your abdomen upright.
- Start by lying down on your stomach, then adjust your body into a plank position.
- Lift your body up with your toes and hands (not your forearms, as in the plank described above).
- Lower your back, allowing your chest to touch the floor.
- Quickly lower the palms of your hands and lift your body back to a plank position.
Tip: If this movement is too much for you, start with your weight on your knees instead of your toes.
- Begin by lying on your back on a bench with your feet flat on the floor.
- Put your hands under your neck, and your elbows to the sides.
- Tighten your abdominal muscles and bring your chest up so that it hits your thighs. Resist the urge to use momentum, instead of your muscles, to bring your body up.
- Guide your body down in a controlled motion to increase your muscle activity.
- Perform 5 sets of 25 repetitions.
Bodyweight workout for muscular endurance
Use your body weight to do muscular endurance tests. Bodyweight training has become a popular form of exercise because of its versatility – no equipment required – and the ability to tailor training to varying degrees of strength. There are many exercises to choose from, so designing a program should be easy.
To get started, choose from these exercises: squats, lunges, push-ups, dips (off of a chair), abdominal crunches, burpees, planks, glute bridge, squat jump, superman.
Do each exercise with the amount of time and reps, moving from one to the next without a break. When you reach the end, take a second 30 to 60 seconds again. Cycle through two to three times.
How to Improve Muscle Endurance
An effective muscular training program uses light weight while performing a high number of repetitions. Studies have shown that this approach seems to be the most effective way to improve local and high-intensity (or strength) endurance.
Choosing workout for muscular endurance
Include a variety of exercises that target one or two limbs or one or two joints or large muscle groups to build muscular endurance such as push ups, sit ups, lunges.
Loading and volume
Load refers to the amount of weight or resistance you use (a 10-pound dumbbell or setting the leg press to 110 pounds, for example). Volume is the number of times you exercise, or the total number of repetitions.
In terms of volume, if you are a novice or intermediate exerciser, aim for 10 to 15 repetitions in one or two sets. If you are an advanced bodybuilder, plan to do more, anywhere from 10 to 25 repetitions per set while you should go for a load that is less than half your max weight.
Rest is important as this allows you recuperate for the next exercise.
Circuit training is good at building local muscle endurance and rest periods during this type of exercise should only fill the time required from one exercise station to another.
Frequency refers to how often you should do exercises that focus on building your muscular endurance. This frequency is similar to that of building larger muscles, which is:
- Novice Training: Do 2-3 days each week when you train whole body.
- Intermediate Training: Do three days a week for a full workout or four days a week if using split routines for upper and lower body workouts.
- Advanced training: Use a higher frequency of four to six days a week if exercise is split by a muscle group.
Repetition of Velocity
Repetition velocity refers to how slow or fast you contract your muscles during a particular workout.
- Intentionally slow velocities: Use when doing moderate repetition (10 to 15).
- Moderate to fast velocities:: This is most effective when training with a higher number of repetitions, such as 15 to 25 or more.