This week I hit a new personal best on the squat: 145kg for one rep.
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I feel a real sense of satisfaction because squatting is something that I have worked really hard at with my coach over the last three years. Since then so many people have reached out asking how I got to this point because they want to be strong too.
Often when women are asking me how I have attained elite strength and body composition they assume that it’s all from heavy lifting that to get in shape you need to be pushing big weights. They also assume that to push big weights on the squat you just… keep pushing big weights and thats what they are doing day in and day out without always making a heap off progress. They feel like if they just try harder and harder they will get there. Until they don’t and their progress stalls or they get injured.
“But Hattie i see you pushing heavy weights all the time, isn’t that what I should do?”
Your body is series of interconnections. When you squat, load goes through all of those connections.
It’s not just your glutes and quads working but its the ligaments in your feet, its the cartridge in your rib cage it’s the muscles inn your shoulder blades it’s your calf which are keeping you upright it’s all of the muscles bones and ligaments in your body, it your blood vessels and heart as your blood pressure shoots up under all that load (it’s even the veins in your eyes)
All of that force is distributed through your body and If you have muscular imbalances or a lack of strength in one spot, another spot will start to get beaten up. So if your calves are weak your back will get sore or if your hamstring are tight you will beat up your knees and a thousand other possibilities (your body is an amazing adaptation machine)
Do you know whats crazy about the numbers I’m pushing right now?
I have completely dropped back the amount of squatting I am doing in fact I’m doing a whole heap of single leg exercises and working on muscular imbalances that means that when I’m hitting the gym and going for the big numbers all of my muscles are synchronised in their efforts and I can drive the bar better.
So how do you get stronger in the squat? What is the right combination of load, technique and muscular balance?
Well technique is everything and load is king.
Which means that to move a big weight you must practice perfectly every time. You must also be adding weight progressively to the bar but this progression can be was slow as you like.
However to perform perfect technique and for your body to accept load you must have developed balance between all of the muscles in your body. Think of developing strength in the squat as a stool with three legs. Technique, load and muscular balance. Without any of legs eventually the stool will topple over (and so will you, literally)
So to help you I have developed a workout planner that will give you a really good guide to the types of exercises you could select to develop muscular balance.
It's the foundations of all the workouts we put together for our girls. Click the link below, enter your details and we'll send it right out.