870 Weight Lifting

Mike talks about the benefits of weight lifting and how he got into pumping iron.


Todd: Mike, I thought we would talk about weight training. You're kind of an expert. I see you in the gym a lot. You're always, you know, lifting weights. How did you get involved in weight training?

Mike: Well, I started in high school. I've played sports since I was little and once I got to high school, we had to start weight training for our team.

Todd: OK, and so did you just start with like, you know, the basics, like free weights or did you do like the machines?

Mike: Yeah, well, we had a weight lifting coach so we did both machines and free weights and he made sure that our form was correct and we did everything properly, so.

Todd: Right, now, actually which did you prefer, the machines or the free weights?

Mike: I prefer free weights. Yeah, I think machine is a little bit more restrictive than free weights so if you know how to... if you have proper guidance, then free weights are better.

Todd: So, actually you play soccer. Is that correct?

Mike: Yes.

Todd: See, that's interesting cause I wouldn't think that soccer players would be into weight training.

Mike: Yeah, that's the usual way of thinking for a lot of people, but actually now people into playing soccer are doing a lot more weights.

Todd: But when you lift weights, don't you feel that you're more tight? Or you're tighter? That you're not flexible?

Mike: Yeah, but that means that you have to stretch. Do a lot of stretching as well.

Todd: So, stretching is just as important as the weight training?

Mike: Yes.

Todd: OK, well, you don't play soccer anymore, do you?

Mike: No, after college I've retired from competitive sports.

Todd: So, do you still follow the same regiment that you did with your soccer training?

Mike: No. Weight lifting when you're not playing sports is different than when you are playing sports, so now I just lift to keep fit and not actually for sports performance.

Todd: Well, that's interesting. Like, what is different about doing weight training for sports and doing it just to be fit?

Mike: The exercises vary a lot. If you're doing, for sports, you do things that you need to do a lot of explosion work so that you can move faster or better and... whereas if you're just staying fit, you just do more to get exercise and you know, to keep your shape.

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson

more restrictive


The machine is more restrictive than free weights.

Here, 'restrictive' means not as flexible and not as helpful.  Notice the following:

  1. Dorm life is more restrictive than living off campus.
  2. British English seems a bit more restrictive than American English.

proper guidance


If you have proper guidance, free weights are better.

We use the word 'guidance' to talk about advice or instruction that is given to us by others.  Notice the following:

  1. Proper guidance is important when learning anything new.
  2. You shouldn't lift heavy weights with out proper guidance.

be into


I wouldn't think that soccer players are into weight training.

When we are 'into' something, that means we really enjoy it and it is very interesting.  Notice the following:

  1. I'm into punk rock.
  2. He's really into sports.



Do you follow the same regimen?

A 'regimen' is a plan we follow to improve our health or skills.  Notice the following:

  1. I follow a regimen of diet, vitamins and exercise.
  2. What's your exercise regimen?

keep fit


Now I just lift to keep fit.

To 'keep fit' means to stay strong and healthy.  Notice the following:

  1. I go jogging to keep fit.
  2. How do you keep fit?
Answer the following questions about the interview.

Keep Listening

Below are some more great lessons!

Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
restrictive • guidance • really into
regimen • keep fit
  1. My grandfather gave me a lot of when I was growing up.
  2. She has a very diet because she has a lot of allergies.
  3. It's hard to when you work 70 hours a week.
  4. You need to develop a workout and then continue to do it.
  5. My little brother is tennis right now.