For many fitness enthusiasts, weightlifters, amateur, professional boxers and anybody that wants to keep fit in general, boxing and lifting weights go hand in hand.
Weightlifting and boxing are both enjoyable in their own right and getting into a routine of both disciplines can be especially rewarding when you perform well in the ring and look great in the mirror. The problem that most people will find is that there are only 7 days in the week and they want to train in both disciplines a little both more than that and a question we get asked all the time is whether you can train both in the same day and the answer is yes.
If you are a professional fighter it will come as no surprise that you can train twice or even three times in a day coming up to a fight but, also, if you are young and healthy, there is no reason not to train weights and boxing in the same day. Your performance might not be 100% in the second session, but if you refuel straight after the first session with an isotonic drink, starchy carbs, veggies and protein, you should still be able to hit it hard in the second session.
Should I Do Boxing Before Or After Weights
If you are going to train both in the same day, I would suggest doing the weights first when you are at 100% because of the nature of what you are trying to achieve with weight training for boxing and that is getting stronger.
Boxers need to be lifting heavy weights for a low amount of reps to increase their strength and then convert that strength into punching power with boxing specific training and explosive movements.
That is why we recommend 5*5 training or even 3-4 reps with 5 sets to really increase our strength
You can also work on muscular endurance by two 2 sets of 15 reps with an accessory exercise like Dumbbell flies, lateral raises, lunges or you can just do everything heavy with 6*3 on the accessory lifts as well.
Doing the boxing before the weights might mean that you are at 90% in the weights room and you really need to be refreshed and ready to go if you want to make strength gains.
What To Eat If You Want To Train Twice A Day
After you train, your sugar levels are going to be low, so it is crucial to get a sugary drink into your system straight after your session and you should looking at getting some good starchy carbs like pasta, sweet potatoes, rice and then adding vegetables like broccoli, tomatoe and the rest of your greens to get your nutrients, iron and vitamins back up.
You should also be looking at protein like fish, chicken and eggs to repair the muscle or you can take a protein shake with oats to increase your sugar levels for the second session. Also try to get a must rest between the sessions as possible, even have a nap if possible.
Is Weight Lifting Good For Boxing
Have you ever seen a fight where one guy is clearly just stronger than the other guy and while the guy without power and strength might even be landing more shots but when the stronger man lands it has far more effect and he ends up winning the fight by knockout, that is more than likely down to strength and power training.
Don’t get the strength and conditioning circuit confused with actually building your strength. While circuits will make beginners and part-timers stronger, these should be called conditioning and endurance classes for more advanced fighters.
Strength training involves heavyweights of compound lifts for a low number of reps. Pick out a weight high enough to do 5 Reps with 5 sets and push on with that. Only do 5*5 with 1 or 2 exercises per day and do the rest accessory lifts with 6*3 for strength and 2*15 for endurance.
Another benefit of hitting the lower rep ranges with higher sets is that you will pack on less useless muscle. Muscle that doesn’t add strength is going to slow you down cause you to tire faster so it is best to be avoided unless adding muscle is your goal.
Heavy Compound Lifting
Compound lifts should be the main focus of adding strength to your power for conversion to power with your boxing training. A compound lift is one that works more than one muscle group in a single lift.
Works the entire body but mainly the hamstrings, glutes, lower back and arms. Go Heavy on these with 5*5 to build strength.
Real good for building the Glutes, Quads and increasing core strength. Make sure you are squatting correctly to avoid injury and you even use a bench as the place to lower to on your squats and explode up from the seated position. 5*5 again for maximum gains.
Pullups are an excellent exercise to build punching power. The work the Lats and the Biceps and once you get advanced at these you should easily be able to knock out 10 in a set and that is the time to add a weight belt to get the rep range down to 5 reps and go for 5 sets. These are a big exercise for punching power.
The Bench Press
A common question guys get asked in the gym is how much can they bench and if you anything like Anthony Joshua, you can probably lift a small car. This is going to build strength in your Chest, Triceps and Shoulders. Go 5*5 Again for maximum gains
The Close Grip Press
This works the chest from a slightly different angle and focusses primarily on the triceps. If you have already done bench press, go 6*3 with these as an accessory exercise to exhaust the muscle. Just place your hands close together on the bar.
Military Press Or Clean And Press
Lifting a heavy barbell with weights over your head for 5 sets of 5 reps is an excellent way to increase your strength. You can even start with the weights down by your hips, shift it up to shoulder height and then press through to lift the weight over your head.
Those lifts will give you a full-body strength workout and while you can do a lot lot more in the gym, just getting those done at least once a week should help you to get stronger, be harder to budge in the ring and to hit harder.
How Many Days Should A Boxer Lift Weights
If you are serious about your boxing, the sport-specific training, cardio and weight training will all have to fit into your week and that is where the question of whether or not you can lift weights and box in the same day comes from.
Boxing specific training like pads, bags, sparring and even circuits will obviously be you main priority and then you need to have excellent levels of cardio as well through running, swimming, and cycling and jumping rope.
With so much pressure on your time, you can get the weight lifting do with a 2 day split or a 3 day split if that suits you better
If I was going for a 2 Day split I would do it like this. All Heavy, no need for excessive volume.
Deadlift: 5 * 5
Squats: 5 * 5
Heavy Lunges: 6 *3 (Each Leg)
Weighted Pull-Ups: 5*5
Bench Press: 5 * 5
Military Press: 5 * 5
Close Grip Press: 6 Reps * 3 Sets
Lateral Raises: 8 * 3
Flies: 8 * 3
If you want to Add an Extra Day, you can add in more power exercises or things like Sled Runs, Weighted Dips, Bulgarian One-Legged Deadlifts, Med Ball Slams, One Arm Med Ball Throws, Landmine Punches, Cable Punches, Plyometric box jumps, etc where you can expend your maximum force into every rep and increase your power but all in all the compound heavy lifting is what you want to do for boxing.
You can also use the third day in the gym to build your core if you don’t get enough of that in the gym you are in.
Planks, Side Planks, Plank Push-Ups, Super Man Planks, Leg Raises Dip Position, Leg Raises Pull Up Position, Mountain Climbers and on and on. Do them all in a row without taking a break. Check Out Christina Hammers Home Workout
Will Weightlifting in the morning affect my boxing in the evening?
The beautiful thing about the human body is that it reacts to new stimuli very well, locks or movements and routines into muscle memory so we become better over time and that is exactly what will happen with training twice a day.
Weightlifting in the morning, even with the right diet, nutrition and rest might mean you are 95% for boxing that night but your body will get used to this and it might even work to your advantage by improving on your conditioning inside the ring as well.
Weightlifting and boxing in the same day should be fine but if you have heavy sparring, it might be better to go into that 100% fresh and ready to go.
With weight lifting, the goal should be increasing strength so avoid the middle rep ranges of 8-12 as this will grow the muscle without giving the maximum strength gains.
Test you 1 rep maxes at least once per month and make sure you are getting stronger. You cant increase in strength and look worse in the mirror so enjoy and let us know in the comments how it goes!