T Nation

To Lift or Not to Lift?


Hey guys, now that wrestling season started, I'm cutting back on the weight lifting a little. I think I have a good excuse, during our normal (hard) wrestling practice, we do an abundance of pushups. Wednesday we did 175 pushups in our 2 hour practice. Thursday we did 215, in sets of course. They don't normally go up that much, but it just gives you a general idea.

I'm in a squat-like stance for a long time during practice, and pushups are just crazy. So I don't know if I should continue to lift that much anymore. I have a lifting class which is before practice, so when practice comes, I need to be able to keep up. Not being able to hold my stance = pushups. Not being able to do pushups = pushups.

Can you guys give me an idea of what I can do that doesn't target legs, lower-back, chest, or triceps?
I know exercises for curling, and I can work my deltoids too. Exercise suggestions would be fantastic.



Overhead presses and pull ups


just lift and do practise...it will only make you stronger and better.


I think the idea that because you stand in a squat stance and do push-ups means you don't need to lift weights is in itself flawed.

On a typical weekday, I do over 300 push-ups and that's just during morning exercise. A push-up has nothing to do with putting on some pectoral muscle mass, nor keeping up good strength, and I know that from many years of first-hand experience.

Triceps, legs, and delt exercises should be what your focus is centered on for wrestling. And push-ups don't count.


Contrl, pushups don't increase pecrotal muscle or keep up strength? Can you explain then why you do them?

I am 35 and began working out recently. Haven't done much of it since my teenage years and am curious what pushups are good for then?


I think you should still do squats powercleans and push press military press or bench.

If you lift often enough "pushups every day" you stop getting sore. Just cut the volume down to one working set and very low rep warm up sets.

Bench, 135x3,225x3,245x1,275x? Squat, 135x3 225x3 315x3 405x? working set
Power clean, 135x2 185x2 225x2 up to a 1 or 2 RM or w/e

2 full body workouts a week....

Just a idea, your a wrestler man.... unless your injured you need to be building brute strength.


Pushups provide conditioning and muscular endurance. There is more to fitness than being able to push big weights and having big muscles.


Honestly, and I know this is going to go against what some others have said thus far, if you're actually in wrestling season, then I would suggest really decreasing the amount of weight training that you do. In season is not the appropriate time to be trying to build muscle and strength, that's what the off season is supposed to be for.

You sound like you've either wasted the off season not preparing for wrestling, or you've been doing a very ineffective program.

What you need to do is just maintain what strength you do have, really practice your wrestling technique and just do what your coaches tell you to do. Once again at this point your focus should be one conditioning and technique. Do push-ups on outside of practice, see if you can find a team mate who is interested and practice technqiue together, try to push each other to be better.

Hopefully when this season is done you'll take this as a learning experience and use the upcoming off season to really work on improving your strength and (if need be) building some muscle.

Good training,



Focus on low-volume workouts that develop power. Lift Twice A Week on whatever days are best for you.

Workout 1:
Bench Press Variation or Weighted Chin-up or Weighted Dip (work up to a 3-5RM. PR every workout with 1 more rep or more weight)

Dumbbell Lunge (6 reps per leg on 1-2 working sets. Go heavy so you only have to do 1 working set. It'll work your grip too)

Row (T-Bar, Barbell, Cable, or Dumbbell Row for 15 reps. If all you got is 100lb Dumbbells then try to get as close to 1,000 reps as you can. Only do 1 working set. This will probably be your hardest exercise of the day.)

High Pull or Barbell Shrug (1-2 Working Sets. Use any Rep Range you Want)

Workout 2:
Squat, Deadlift, or Good-Morning Variation (3-5RM. Same Idea as the ME exercise in Workout 1)

Dumbbell Bench on a Swiss Ball (6-10 Reps. 1 Working Set. Once you get your balance down this is basically a floor press where you get to bounce off the swiss ball. It's not that hard)

Rear Delt Exercise (if you have a pec-deck that can be used for this, use it. If not do some flys)

So there's your workout. 3-4 Exercises every workout. 1 or 2 working sets per exercise. If you can handle more volume, then do more workouts. If you can't, I don't know what to do.


low rep, high intensity, low volume basic movements. so 2-5 sets of Heavy singles doubles or triples or even up to fiveples, manage volume so it doesnt kill you, dont overdo it but dont be a puss
do squats, DL, rows, chins, Dips, Benchpress, Pushpress, Olympic style moves etc.
youve got wrastling so its probably better to err on the side of being a puss for now.


I'm in the military, my ability to do many many push-ups, sit-ups and a fast run-time determine what people's general perception of me is.

Shallow, I know.


Any exercise provides "conditioning," by its crude definition.

And your interpretation of "fitness" deviates from your argument.


I know what your saying Contrl.

I was in the corps, it sucks to be forced into an exercise routine of pushups and pullups and running when you do more on your offtime workout in 1 day than most guys in the military do all week, but your body does get used to it, I could do pushups all morning and bench just fine at night.