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Weight lifting, pushups and situps are both similar and different.
While weight lifting, pushups and situps are all forms of resistance training, pushups and situps target different muscles from each other by often using just your own bodyweight. When weight lifting, you use added forms of resistance, such as dumbbells, barbells and weighted plates for your exercises. For increased difficulty, weights can be added to pushups and situps, transforming them into a form of weight lifting. However, diversify your weight-lifting routine for a well-rounded and functional physique.
Pushups are performed to work the pectorals, triceps and anterior deltoids. To perform a pushup, lie face-down on the floor with your hands on the ground and shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms fully while your body is kept straight, and then lower yourself back down to your starting position. Add resistance by having a partner place weighted plates on your back as you perform the movement.
Situps mainly target the abdominals. Hook your feet under a sturdy object or have a partner pin down your ankles. Lie on your back with your knees bent and facing upward. Contract your abdominals and bend at your waist to raise your torso. Return back downward to finish the repetition. For added difficulty, hold a weighted plate behind your head throughout the entire range of motion.
Various weight-lifting exercises exist for almost every muscle in the body, including those not stimulated by pushups and situps, such the muscles in the legs and back. For example, barbell squats target the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and spinal erectors all at once, while barbell rows are used to build the all of the muscles in your back. These are compound exercises that recruit multiple muscles simultaneously. Isolation exercises also exist in weight lifting, such as dumbbell bicep curls, that target only one muscle and require you to only bend at one joint. For bicep curls, this would describe the biceps and elbow joint, respectively.
Practice any given exercise with the correct technique to maximize its benefits and minimize your risk for injury. Ask a trainer or coach for guidance and to ensure you are performing the movements properly. Only add resistance when you can comfortably and easily complete an exercise with a lighter weight.