3 Badass Barbell Moves That Will Make You Stronger Than Ever

Never be afraid of the free weight area again.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

The free-weight area of the gym can be intimidating. But doing total-body exercises, while lifting heavier weights, is extremely good for your overall health no matter what your goals are.

The free-weight area of the gym can be intimidating. But doing total-body exercises, while lifting heavier weights, is extremely good for your overall health no matter what your goals are.

Weightlifting is key to helping you reach your fitness goal, whether it's to lose weight, prevent injury, build up endurance, or just become stronger, Albert Matheny, advisor for ProMix Nutrition and certified strength and conditioning expert at Soho Strength Lab, tells BuzzFeed.

“It helps you build muscle, which increases your metabolism, helping you burn more fat,” he says. “And the most effective way to lift is to do compound moves that engage multiple muscle groups with a good amount of weight.”

And by the way, if you're a woman who's concerned about getting too bulky from lifting, you probably don't have to worry. More on that here.

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Before you start, here's more info on how to do these moves safely and how to incorporate them into your workout.

To fit them into your workout: Make each one the first lift of your workout when you're starting out; that way you'll have the energy to do it with proper form and lower risk of injury. Try doing 3 to 4 sets of 8 to 12 reps. And remember that these are taxing, total-body moves, so you don't want to be doing them all on the same day.

Okay, let's get into it!

This move is great for seriously increasing your upper body strength (pectorals, triceps, deltoids) and helping with your overall stability.

The set-up:
• Plant your feet firmly on the floor. If your feet don't reach the floor, stack plates beside the bench so your feet can rest on them.
• Grip the bar with your hands about shoulder-width apart.
• Rack the bar so that when your hands are gripping it, your arms are bent and your elbows are at your sides (your arms should not be fully extended).

The movement:
• Lift the bar off the rack and hold it just over your sternum or lower chest (over the lower pectoral muscle).
• Press the bar up until your arms are straight and your elbows are locked out.
• Bring the bar down slowly until it lightly touches your sternum. This is one rep.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed


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