The lexicon of muscle-building, and training - Part 30

See Heavy weights, and light weights.



Little discs

Weight plates or discs lighter than the smallest ones typically available in most gyms. Commonly, 2.5 pounds or 1.25 kilos are the smallest plates available. The little discs, or microloads, are plates that weigh, for example, 0.5 and 1.0 pound, and 0.1, 0.25, and 0.5 kilo. Instead of progressing from 150 pounds to 155 in one jump (using two 2.5-pound plates), for example, use the little gems to progress by one pound at a time. This can be invaluable for ensuring steady, gradual, safe, and consistent progress. Little plates can be placed on adjustable barbells, and adjustable dumbbells. They can also be pinned onto weight stacks.

Large washers, available from some hardware stores, are a reduced-cost alternative to specially made little gems. Find how many washers are needed to produce one pound, then slip that number on a barbell for an increment of one pound, or half as many for half a pound. Another alternative, also available from some hardware stores or ironmongers, is chain. Have lengths of chain cut to the weight you want — for instance, half a pound per length. The chains can be jammed between plates on a barbell, or hung from a weight belt for some exercises.


The final few inches of an exercise before the joints are fully extended, or locked out.


A written record of the weights, sets, and reps performed at each workout, to provide, among other things, a statement of what needs to be surpassed next time in order to register a progressive workout. A logbook is also called a training log or training diary.


There is, confusingly, variation with how lordosis is interpreted.

If you stand upright with your head, buttocks, and heels against a wall, there should be sufficient space between your lower back and the wall to fit your hand through. This is a normal and desired concave or inward (toward the navel) curvature of the lower spine provided it can be maintained as your natural posture as you move around. When the degree of curvature is exaggerated, it's termed lordosis; and when it's highly exaggerated, it's termed hyperlordosis or sway back, where the butt sticks out substantially and the belly protrudes in a pronounced way. When there's no curvature in the lower back, posture is poor, and usually accompanied by rounded or slouched shoulders (or kyphosis).

Although lordosis is often used to signify a defect — namely, excessive curvature of the lower spine — sometimes it's used to describe the normal, healthy curvature.

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